DAY 6: 1,000 WORDS: A YEAR AND A HALF WORKING IN CANADA, BEFORE MY WEDDING.
Sixth day of writing and publishing a thousand words. This is the first weekend since I started this challenge for myself, and I had some plans set for today already, so I’m glad I was able to set aside some time in order to write this today, even though weekends are usually real busy for me. Maria and I woke up today really early in the morning and caught a quick bus (called “rapidito” here in Honduras, translated to “very fast”) to the Guamilito market, one of the most popular markets here in San Pedro, where one can find many beautiful hand-made crafts, all shining with lively, vibrant colors along the walls, among many other cool things. A few weeks ago we bought some stuff there actually, including a really nice wooden pipe with some Mayan kind of design, which I personally enjoyed testing out quite a bit with some good chronic. I feel it even added to the taste, but it could just be all in my head too. Today we made sure to buy some veggies, broccoli and peppers for our next few days’ meals, and also some tortillas so Maria can make some delicious tacos she’s been wanting to make for a while now. Needless to say, I can’t wait to try ’em out, since her meals are always delicious. We had a great time, it was a beautiful sunny morning, and we ate some ‘yuca con chicharron”, yucca with pork rinds, at the market just before heading back home, where we relaxed to watch a show. Maria had to go after that since she’s scheduled to work 4 hours today. I wish she could stay home with me, but it is what it is. At least I have some time to work on my writing. I also got to finish reading Franz Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis” today. Very strange story for sure. Although very simple and the plot uneventful, I enjoyed it a lot to be completely honest. It’s the first Kafka book I’ve read but my guess is that the point of the story might be to transmit a feeling of hopelessness to the reader, as the protagonist of the story finds himself suddenly turned into a giant bug overnight, and can hear his family talking about him and his situation from then on, yet cannot communicate with them in any way. It’s part of a series of books I’ve been reading since November 2018, since I set a goal for myself of reading at least a book a week. This week I finished two short books, the aforementioned “The Metamorphosis”, and Evelyn Underhill’s “Practical Mysticism”, as I often read non-fiction, sometimes even more than fiction, in fact. Now that I finished reading that story though, and commenting a bit on it, let’s keep going for now with my own story. Yesterday I left off at the part of my life when I traveled back to Canada, at the end of 2015, in order to save up for my wedding with Maria. This objective motivated me so much that for the very first time in my life I actually put my all into the job I got hired for, I really put it an effort, no doubt about it. I made sure to put in extra hours whenever necessary, to learn as quick as possible how to do everything correctly so as not to jeopardize my job. I had returned to Canada with a very clear and defined goal, to save up the money for all that Maria and I would need in order to make our dream wedding come true as soon as possible. We had a hope that we could get married in Canada, so Maria applied for a visitor’s visa, but it was unfortunately denied for very vague reasons. It seemed we just had to face the fact that we would be apart from other for the time being, there was no way around it. We still kept in touch every day on WhatsApp chat and video. Even though I returned to live at my parents’ home, they found comfort in the fact that I now had a serious objective, that I was committed to the job I had, and that I was no longer partying or hanging out with friends for no reason anymore, making reckless decisions and staying out most nights. The situation had significantly changed since those crazy childhood days, and I was enjoying a new peace of mind I had never felt before while living at my parent’s home (ever since my teenage years started, at least). Being far away from them for so long had allowed all of us to analyze our relationship, as parents and son, from a different perspective, it seemed like it had done us some good as it had renewed a fresh new appreciation for family. My newfound love had allowed me to put to the side, somewhat, my restlessness and need for constant excitement. My life became work and home, since I would have to catch the SkyTrain every morning, on weekdays, from Surrey Central station, and ride all the way Downtown to the Megrez office, and would take the same trip back home in the evenings, after getting off work and blazing up at the New Amsterdam Cafe that is, Vancouver’s most famous weed lounge which was just two blocks away from my workplace. That became my daily routine, and work was exhausting since there was never a second of the day when I was truly free of some task. This job was demanding in every sense, and especially it demanded a certain degree of seriousness and careful attention which I had never applied to any previous job I’d had in the past. I had to make sure the office ran smoothly in all its aspects. I also had to make sure I did everything as I was supposed to, since my boss, the owner of the company, hired me mostly due to his respect for my parents, who he himself helped immigrate to Canada in 2004. Although, in a way, I was more fit for the job than most of those who had held it in the past or who were aspiring for the position, speaking fluent English and Spanish as well as very good Portuguese, in some aspects I was completely unprepared, as I had never had any kind of experience with executive work, and I was only used to jobs where I was just another employee, where my work wasn’t essential at all (at least in my eyes). At Megrez, everything passed by me, and it was my task to refer each document, each case, each call, each client, to who it corresponded to, and also to scan and save and file everything in its place. There was only about 3 other employees at the company, apart from myself and the boss. The days flew by like airplanes in the sky, faster than race cars as I longed for the big day when I would return to Honduras and be reunited with my love. We’ll continue this tale tomorrow though.
~ Rebel Spirit ~
DAY 5: 1,000 WORDS: RETURN TO VANCOUVER & LONG-DISTANCE LOVE.
Fifth day straight of getting a thousand words down and publishing them! When I started this challenge I was afraid that I would lose motivation after the second or third day, a thousand words seemed like a lot to tackle every single day. I see now that by taking this challenge I’ve proved those expectations I had for myself totally wrong, at least so far. Fifth day going and I feel I have more to write about than ever before. Sometimes the desire to write vanishes for a few days for no apparent reason, as if new inspiration needs to be build up, to accumulate in order for writing to happen. These past 5 days though I’ve been filled with ideas of things I’d like to mention in these posts. I think it might have something to do with the style of writing I’m using at the moment. I’m simply putting 1000 words together on the spot, about whatever comes to my mind at the moment, but also trying to stay on topic and on sequence as much as possible! Before, I almost always had a topic in mind that I wanted to write about, and I spent endless minutes and hours editing, re-reading, deleting, adding different words and phrases. I felt confined by the organization process and the having to divide everything up into little paragraphs and such things. I know organization is surely important, but I’m just saying I feel freer when writing this way. Every writing style has its time. Alright, so let’s continue with the story that has brought me up to this point then. Yesterday we left off a few years ago when I came back to my birth country of Honduras, started working at a call center as a collections agent, and had my first interaction with my future wife, which was an unexpected hug! So, after we bumped into each other, hugged, and smiled at each other for just a second, we started talking more and more often on the “floor”, where the work gets done, where all the little box cubicles are at. I asked what she liked to do on the weekends and she simply replied “sleep”. Sleep? I thought she was kidding for sure. I was used to looking forward to Friday every week in order to get as crazy as possible all weekend long! We didn’t make any plans just yet, but one day, just casually talking about what we each were going to eat later, we ended up planning to go to Wendy’s later on, during our break, since it was the closest place to eat, right outside the call center. In fact, we got a special discount there for being employees at the call center. So, evening came, and just as it was getting dark we went out to eat on our last break of the day. We ordered some burgers and fries and some iced tea, which I noticed she loved just as much as me, and we had a great conversation. She mentioned a situation in which it seemed like things had worked out in her favor, in which she had gotten rid of a problem that had been bothering her, almost miraculously and out of the blue, and she thanked God for it. I mentioned that everything happens for a reason. Although I was still ignorant to much of spirituality at that time, and wasn’t really thinking much in spiritual terms at all, I always had a vague belief that everything does happen for a reason. Our conversation was so great that we were really late back to work, but the job was chill so it wasn’t really a problem. A few weeks after that we had a movie date, and that’s where we kissed for the first time. I can’t recall the movie we watched anymore, to be honest. After this, our friendship grew as well as our love for each other. During this time I was no longer living with my grandparents, I had gotten a place with a good friend, Randy, who I met at the call center as well. He had lived in the States, in Miami, most of his life and is kind of like my crazy friends from back in Canada, so we had a lot of good times. It was during those crazy days that I asked Maria to be my girlfriend, on January 17th, 2015, almost exactly four years ago. We spent that whole year together. Since we worked at the same place, we were together throughout the day, through our short breaks and lunch hours, during times of low call volume. Her English is not bad at all, having taught elementary school kids here in Honduras before going to work at Collective Solution, the call center where we both worked. She accepted, of course, to be my girlfriend, and by the end of the year, we were so crazy about, and committed to, each other, that we decided to get married so that Maria could go to back to Canada with me, eventually. The idea was that I would travel back to Canada alone in order to save up some money for our wedding and honeymoon, for everything we needed, and also since I hadn’t seen my parents and brothers in over two years, other than on Skype. Maria could continue working at Collective for the time being. I flew back to Vancouver in December of 2015, and it was great to see my family again, yet I really missed Maria. I got a job working at Megrez Consultants, an immigration consulting firm. This job was quite different from any other job I had been hired for before, as I was to be the executive assistant to the owner of the firm, as well as the administrator and receptionist for the whole office. I wast to be the first one there and the last one out, and I would have to work extra hours sometimes. The name of the owner of Megrez is Jose Godoy, and he’s ran his immigration consulting business in Downtown Vancouver for almost 20 years, helping people from all backgrounds get all kinds of processes and applications done in order to come to, or stay in, Canada. Since he is of Chilean background and Spanish is his native language, as well as speaking fluent English, his clients are mostly Latinos. I would have to speak English as well as a lot of Spanish, which was good for my practice in order to keep it fluent and fresh (and I even learned some new Spanish at that job), and I would sometimes have to speak Portuguese as well, which I know from my father’s side, as he is from Brazil. In the meantime, I would Whatsapp Video chat with Maria every day, always during breaks and my lunch hour, during which I usually ate at the Pho place right below my workplace (Pho is delicious Vietnamese soup, for those who don’t know), and as soon as I got back home. She became so special to me over time, and we couldn’t wait to be married, and for her to be there with me. More on how everything unfolded next week though, since I gotta get to work now. Take care and God bless!
~ Rebel Spirit ~
DAY 4: 1,000 WORDS: WORKING IN HONDURAS & MEETING MY WIFE.
Fourth day of writing and publishing 1000 words. Thankfully I woke up today feeling really motivated to finish my writing before I left for work. I realized I can reach more people during the day, probably since most English readers are awake at around the same hours as I am. I also realized that putting 1000 words together isn’t so difficult after all, which in turn made me realize something much deeper. This realization, which has come to me 4 days into this writing goal I’ve set for myself, has revealed to me the fact that, if I wasn’t writing already before and publishing something on my blog every day, it was simply because I didn’t really want to. I always said I wanted to, yet I wasn’t putting the work in as I should have, I was still second-guessing, doubting whether things can work out, making excuses and writing only for myself, or some days not even writing at all since I was even second-guessing my thoughts before I had a chance to jot them down. I was in love with the outcome, with the mental image of success that I had visualized so often, yet in my obsession I had forgotten to really feel and be at one with the present moment when my writing was taking place, when my art was being created. I feel that I’ve begun to regain that now, and needless to say I’m real glad about it. As I write simply just to write, I notice I enter a state of flow, of clear-headed continuity, much the same as the feeling I get when I create and record my raps. It’s made me see that we all have things we could naturally excel at if we weren’t so afraid. Too many of us are still living in fear, or wondering what the point is of even trying, or thinking there are a million others just like us, so what difference could we possibly make? To be blunt, this kind of thinking reveals a completely backward mindset. Our ideas of what living life really means need to drastically change. At the end of the day, all each and every one of us can ever offer the world is what we really are, and nothing else. We must be ourselves to the fullest, and not give in to fear, or to pressure, or to temptation, or to laziness or pessimism. It is enough to simply BE ourselves, to just BE HERE NOW, and the right situations are bound to come to us. But alright, now that I got that thought down as a sort of intro for today’s piece, let’s continue with the story of how I ended up back here in Honduras, writing to the world about life. To sum up Day 2 and 3 of this writing experiment of mine, I’ve been detailing how I grew up as a teenager in Vancouver, BC, in Canada, and since I got involved in a lot of problems by following the crowd and doing dumb things, and since I just couldn’t reconcile my lifestyle with living at my parents’ home, I decided to travel back to Honduras, to live with my grandparents and work at a call center for a collections agency. At that job, about a month into being employed there, I met a beautiful girl, the one who is now my amazing wife! Although I was captured by her voice, as I sat a few feet away from her, I didn’t say anything on that day. I wondered about her though. She seemed so mysterious, so quiet and simple, so relaxed, so kind. A few weeks after that experience I arrived at work and found a letter at my cubicle desk. It had a drawing of a cute cat face drawing, and it said my name and some other things. A secret admirer letter? Wow, that’s weird for sure. Not many people actually do that kind of thing, especially girls, I thought. It had some initials but no name, and it never could have occurred to me that it could be from my future wife, from that mysterious girl who sat at the corner. Up to this point, I had never even thought seriously of the possibility of getting married at such a young age. I had no need to, and it seemed like an unnecessary bond, a trap that would prevent me from having endless fun with any girl I wanted. Let’s remember that up to this point in life I had always been primarily focused on fun, on what I thought and always said was “living life to the fullest”, which was basically just a delusional hedonism now that I look back at it. I never thought that things such as true love and romantic companion were possible, having only met and interacted with girls who were always getting drunk and partying and acting even crazier than me half the time! I had dated girls who cheated on me, and I saw how my friends all broke up and got back together a million times, cheated and were cheated on. All I knew was fake, everyone around me pretending to be friends, but only hanging out since we all were attempting to mask our own sorrows in drugs and partying, loyal to no one but ourselves. I understand all of this now, for sure, but at that time I didn’t have these ideas. I was ready to let the party continue here in Honduras as well. As soon as I started working at the call center I met a lot of guys like me, who all smoked weed of course, but also drank, did other drugs like coke, and partied and fucked all the time, living life day by day yet for no deeper purpose other than mainly chasing thrills. I’m not trying to judge anyone, I was living in the same way, and it’s been hard to get out of it as habits definitely do stick around for a while. I also know why it can be tempting to live in this way, since it allows for non-stop fun with minimal time for reflection, which would reveal to us our feelings of sadness, of not being truly satisfied with life. The point is that the show went on, and I was nowhere near ready for a serious relationship at that time. The first time Maria and I actually spoke was by pure coincidence. I was walking into the call center really fast from my break, and as I opened the door to go in she was about to open it from the other side. Since I was going at a considerable speed we sort of crashed, not too hard though, it was more of a hug, so we just hugged anyway and she smiled. “Sorry!” I said smiling, for having bumped into her, but I knew she enjoyed our hug just as much as I did! “No problem!” was her reply. Since we sat real close to each other, we got to talking in our free moments between calls, and shortly I figured out the letter on my desk had been from her. From there everything just kept going uphill, but I have enough words for today, so the story will have to continue tomorrow! Adios for today, amigos!
~ Rebel Spirit ~
DAY 3: 1,000 WORDS: WHERE I’M WRITING FROM (part 2).
Third day of writing and publishing 1000 words. For the sake of honesty I have to say, my energy and enthusiasm today are not as high as they were during my first two days of this challenge, and for that reason I wasn’t able to post this in the morning as usual. I won’t let this sudden mood change kill my determination though, so I have to get 1000 words together no matter what, and I will post them before midnight for sure. One of the main reasons for this goal, apart from exercising my writing ability, is to work on my self-control and determination. I haven’t set a date for how long I’ll write 1000 words for, I’m just going to keep writing indefinitely, hopefully until the end of my days. Anyway, just to quickly recap on where we’re at so far on this literary journey, yesterday I was explaining a bit about the circumstances which brought me from Vancouver, BC back to my birth country of Honduras, where I’m currently writing from. I didn’t have space to finish my story yesterday, so let me get back to it. Growing up in Vancouver, where my parents moved in 2004, I started hanging out with a lot of crazy kids. Many aspects of Canadian culture were very different from what we were accustomed to as a Latino family. Adapting to this new experience and all it entailed was hard on my parents, especially during the first few years, but to me everything seemed wonderful as I lived in a childish state of pure ignorance towards my family’s situation. After arriving in Vancouver at the age of 10 and starting to attend elementary school (grade 4) I started making friends quick, having already learned a significant amount of English at a bilingual elementary school in Honduras. I was a naïve kid, excited about my freedom and independence, about being a teenager in a new country, a safer country with more opportunities for fun and adventure. My parents, having always been very overprotective, now began to loosen up a bit, feeling like Canadian culture was somewhat more sane than that of Honduras. Having always taught my brothers and I about God and morality, and having been great examples of ideal people themselves, my folks never imagined that their firstborn son would end up caught up in some of the things I ended up getting involved in. Today I would feel a deep regret about all of the suffering I caused them, except that I know now that everything is meant to be (although things are only meant to be so that I can learn something from them in order to positively impact the present, and by extension the future). At the age of 13, around 2007/08 was really when it all started. I was always a friendly kid, and was open to friendships with anyone. I met Mike in grade 8, he was my best friend all throughout that year and throughout the summer that followed it. Grade 8 in BC is the start of high school, so that year I got to know more kids than ever before, due to the fact that all grade sevens from all elementary schools in the area were now in classes together, all at the same school. I’ve always been kind of a weirdo, and the kids I started hanging out with the most were the craziest ones, a lot of them being introduced to me by Mike, who was a really troubled child. We started problems everywhere we went. Alcohol and other drugs made it all real fun and allowed me to ignore the reality of what I was turning my life into, as it was all a fun and crazy mess with no time left for reflection. I was living on auto-pilot. I’ll touch more upon this period of my life in later posts, but for now we can skip the details of some of the craziest things that happened during those years. Let’s just say for now that many dark years of of lying went by, me lying, mom crying, dad yelling, school and police accusing, me denying. Fights, school suspensions and eventual expulsion, shoplifting, and many more constant problems I was always involved in. After about 9 years of this my parents were getting extremely tired of it, and since I was now about 19 years old I was getting tired of the constant conflict as well. It had always annoyed me, and I had wanted to move out of my parents house for as long as I could remember but I never had enough money to do so since I always spent it all. Now that I was almost 20 I knew it was time, I had to move away no matter what. By this point, I had already calmed down a bit since the days when I was hanging out with Mike, and really the only drug I was still using constantly was weed, as I still am up till today (more on why in future posts). My parents could never accept this though, and I could never come home and simply be at peace since I would always have to hear a lecture about a habit which I was not going to stop after having already blazed for about 7 years straight at that point, and which I had already decided was an essential part of my lifestyle. I flew to Honduras as soon as I could, and came to live at my grandparents’ home, in a spare room they had. Since 15 years old I had always worked, since I liked having my own money so that I could buy exactly what I wanted whenever I needed it, and the same was going to be true in Honduras. I was really into working out in those days, so I signed up for a monthly gym membership. The gym mentor was an old crazy Honduran who had lived in the US a while back and told me stories about having fought in some old war, I can’t remember which. Anyway, after a few conversations he told me that here in San Pedro Sula, most English speakers work in call centers, as they pay workers good money for simply talking on the phone, doing customer service, sales, or collections work. There was a popular call center, Collective Solution, right across the street from the gym. I told him I would apply, and I did and was hired that same day, as good English is really the most basic requirement they look for. About a month after starting to work there, I think in August of 2014, I met the beautiful lady who became my wife a few years later. The call center is divided into different “campaigns”. Basically, each campaign is a third party representing a specific client, some American company that has agents working overseas (in order to pay them less). I was hired for a collections campaign, to collect on past due accounts for the Fresno Credit Bureau. A few steps from me was a campaign for H20 Wireless, a cell phone company, and in one of the spare moments of boredom in between calls my attention was caught by a soft, emphatic voice, saying to the customer on the other end of the line, “Hello, my name is Marie, how can I help you today?” I turned around to notice a mysterious girl with a hoodie on her head sitting in the corner…
DAY 2: 1,000 WORDS: WHERE I’M WRITING FROM (part 1).
Second day of writing 1000 words and publishing them. Yesterday I mainly touched upon on what inspires me to write, trying to simplify as much as possible even though I have various complex reasons for writing and for undertaking this challenge (of writing and publishing 1000 words a day, every day). Today I’d like to focus actually on where I’m writing from at the moment, and why. I am currently living in Central America, writing to you all from the Honduran city of San Pedro Sula, the same one which thousands of people including women with babies to their breasts recently just began marching from, less than a week ago, forming part of a huge caravan which moves along in hopes of soon arriving at the United States, ready to live the American dream upon entering the country as illegal immigrants. To be honest I think it’s really irresponsible to attempt such a challenging and dangerous journey with small children, but the more time I’ve spent here the more I realize I’m not in the same situation as these people, so I can’t accurately judge their actions. I just think it’s irresponsible due to the fact that Trump has vowed not to even let any of them in, of course. Why would people want to go somewhere where they are not welcome? Where they would be deported as soon as found? People must have some real good reasons to leave. I was personally born here in Honduras, back in 1994, in its capital city of Tegucigalpa, and lived ten years here before my parents decided to move to Canada. I’m forever grateful to my folks and thankful to God for providing my brothers and I with the opportunity of growing up and going to school in a first world country, in a safe and developed nation, one of the safest in the world in fact, and I surely wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for their decision to leave their old lives behind so that my brothers and I could live better ones in a new country. We were never rich, but we were never poor either. My father has been a scholar all his life and has a Master’s Degree in economy, yet even he chose to leave a good career behind to go and work random odd jobs in the Canadian cold, just so that his three children could have greater opportunities than we would have ever had here in Honduras. I owe so much to my parents who took me from here to Vancouver at the age of ten, and apart from that, it is obvious that so many people who live here are so sick and tired of doing so that they are taking desperate action in order to escape. So what the hell am I even doing back here for such a prolonged period anyway? That’s definitely a question I’m often asked nowadays, both by people who have lived in the States before and have been deported back here only to forever miss the lifestyle they used to live, as well as by those who have never even lived outside of Honduras but would jump at the opportunity of leaving for good. A few travelers have even died on their journey up North during the first couple caravans which took place, and the fact is that people here just don’t feel safe, they don’t feel they can trust their government or the police, and they live in constant fear of the ruthless gangs and corrupt politicians who control every aspect of society and business here. So many people feel the journey is definitely worth the risk, even with all the dangers involved. A lot of the people I’ve met here so far in my time being back simply cannot understand why I would want to be here, being able to travel back to Canada at any moment as a citizen. As a kid I flew back here to visit once or twice, along with my family, for a few weeks or a month. Honduras being as dangerous as it is, my siblings and I spent most of our time with family, with my cousins, uncles and aunts and grandparents. We always returned to Canada, and as I grew into my teenage years growing up in Vancouver, I got mixed up with some bad crowds, and the stressful situation at home and with my family relationships simply were too much for me to deal with any longer. When my parents moved to Canada they never imagined that the greater liberty which the youth has there, living in a safe country, creates an atmosphere where kids as young as 12 or 13 are often free to be partying and consuming drugs, whereas in Honduras most kids at that age spend most of their time with parents. I was living a lifestyle of partying, constant drinking and consuming other substances to excess, staying out all night and ignoring my parents’ phone calls for quite a few years, since around the age of 13. I got in trouble with police, with school staff, got kicked out of school, and eventually ended up finishing my high school education online. The worst thing, the thing that really killed me though, was the constant guilt I felt for putting my parents through such stress. They thought they were losing a child to the negative forces of the world. But I didn’t want to change my lifestyle. In those days I had ideas much different from those I have today, and rather than changing for the better and attempting to mend the broken relationships I had with my parents, I thought it best to just leave. I thought they would be better off without me, and I would have more peace farther away from them. Ignorance is bliss was really my philosophy. I’ve always had crazy fantasies of travel, a wanderlust that impacts my whole being and prevents me from standing still. I still wish to travel the world as much as I possibly can even today. So, faced with a depressing and seemingly inescapable situation back home as I could never did save up enough money to get my own place, I decided to travel back to my original home, back to my roots and my culture, unaccompanied this time. I flew to Honduras in 2013 and unpacked all my stuff in one of my grandparents’ spare rooms, knowing they knew nothing of my craziness and would not bother me or prevent me from doing what I wanted. Well, I have enough words to post for today, so I’ll have to keep the story going from 2013 up to now in tomorrow’s 1000-word post.
~ Rebel Spirit ~
DAY 1: 1,000 WORDS: INTRODUCTION TO EXPERIMENT.
First day of writing down 1000 words and publishing them. What’s the point of this long term goal I’ve set for myself? The main goal is simply to use my talent to the best of my abilities, to practice, to share what I can with the world, and to learn more about myself, and the universe in general, in the process. I have been writing, in fact, for about eleven years now, but in the form of rap lyrics. You can check out my songs and albums in the “Music” section of my site. I’m a musician and I try to be as conscious as possible with the lyrics I write (although that wasn’t always the case), since I now understand the great impact all our words have on the world and on the collective consciousness. For as long as I can remember I’ve been wanting to really write though, to get my ideas across in a clearer, more concise fashion, even if just to a few people. Sometimes, being so focused on fame and wealth, we become discouraged by having only minor success, or only a few followers or readers. Unfortunately I’ve been guilty of this myself. In such cases, we fail to see how much of an impact we might be having on these few people who interact with us or with our art, who in turn will impact the lives of many others down the line. We forget to acknowledge the fact that each powerful impact you make on a single person is a miracle, it is a great blessing and a privilege to be able to make a contribution to the total power of goodness in the universe. I believe we all have this potential goodness within us, it being the essence of who we truly are at the deepest level of what being even means, “the image of God” within us. It is a simple message I want to bring forth through my work, whether working on music or literature. I claim to follow no religion, but in reality you could say I follow every religion. I read and learn as much as I can from the ancient and newer texts of all the great religions and mystical orders, and I’ve realized up to this point that they all point towards the same main ideals, ones we can all feel within us through our power of intuition. All the mystics of all the religions throughout the ages have emphasized the power of peace and of respect for all people, and of acknowledgement of all worldly citizens as our brothers and sisters, as equal to us. I practice meditation daily and follow a lot of what Buddhism and Hinduism teach, since I believe much wisdom can come from quiet contemplation and serene concentration of consciousness, as well as focusing on spiritual matters instead of sense enjoyment all the time. Apart from that though, I was raised in a mainly Christian home, although my father later preferred Judaism and started attending a synagogue. Although a lot of the Biblical concepts, especially those of the Old Testament, have become strange to me in my recent years of studying Eastern spirituality, I still read a chapter of the Bible on most days, together with my wife, as I do believe there is much to be learned from it if one seeks to humbly understand instead of judge or condemn. We just finished reading First Kings last night in Spanish. I’m familiar with the teachings of Jesus and with most of the rest of the Bible as well, having been taught about it extensively growing up, and none of it conflicts, but rather goes hand in hand, with the teachings of mystical ideas such as those of the Vedanta or the Tao. My message is not merely religious however, it is a simple yet essential message which we all need to hear, whether from within ourselves or from others who have heard it from within themselves, in order to live life correctly, and to stop causing more problems and confusion on top of that which exists all around us already in this crazy world. We need to stop separating the spiritual from the physical, and we need to see the oneness beyond all apparent duality. We need to stop second-guessing ourselves so much, wanting to be the greatest, wanting to be known, afraid of being rejected, afraid of everyone else as if they were different from us. We need to simply be, and to understand that being is One in all of us, and that we are all sharing a common experience since we are all being together, one Being, basically one Spirit keeping us all alive. The more I’ve been realizing this, the more I’ve felt there is no sense in holding back my writing any longer. Those who are meant to read this will read it, and those who aren’t won’t. Some will understand and others won’t just yet, but maybe later. We all find inspiration in so many different things, and this is what keeps life going. This is the start of me doing what I love to do with the purpose of affecting the world in a positive way, regardless of what anyone might think, regardless of money or what the journey of life might bring. If you’re someone trying to promote positivity and you think you have something to offer which can impact the world in a good way, don’t let doubt or insecurity hold you back. Let your light shine with no shame or fear, and doors will open up. For too long I lived with no purpose, I wrote music with no deeper meaning, I hung around with old friends cracking jokes and beer bottles, partying, getting into fights and problems, just completely acting a fool. Viktor Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning” is the book that made me finally understand that life without meaning is empty and that one must find meaning in life in order to truly be alive. I now have enough words to publish the first day of this experiment. Let’s see where this goes from here.
THE INSPIRATION THAT YOU SEEK IS ALREADY WITHIN.
The inspiration that you have so desperately sought for so long could be found within you all along. Upon realizing this, I urge you not to waste another minute on mere wishing, on hopeless daydreaming, or on blaming others because things aren’t as good as you wish they were. Don’t waste a single second on complaining about the circumstances that currently seem to confine you. The real you cannot be confined. If you only realized how free you really are you would not allow the temporary pleasures and pains of the world to torment you to such an extent. If you had an accurate understanding of your own freedom you would realize how free you already are to control your mental state and to balance your emotions and thoughts, to ultimately bring about the exact conditions you long for. It’s unfortunate that we often waste so much precious time knocking on so many doors on our quest for that missing thing, that magical thing that could fill the emptiness within us, that long missing which is still missing even after we’ve given ourselves to every worthless vice on the planet. Could you believe it if I told you there was never anything missing in the first place? The blind man cannot see the world before his eyes, yet the world is there nonetheless. He would be reasonable to believe that the world is not there, if he were never told that the world is there. Another example is Plato’s classic cave parable. There is so much more to us than can be perceived by the ordinary senses, and this in itself inspires me greatly.
The desire for extra-sensory perception can be a danger for sure though as it can lead to dissatisfaction with daily life in someone who has not realized their inner inspiration. Such people are easily attracted and lured in by the first fleeting feeling of potential escape from the life they loathe. If we add to this the fact that many of us spend our days slaving away at jobs which we don’t enjoy and can find no true sense of purpose in, it is only natural that so many people seem to feel uninspired. So many of us feel like there is no value to anything we do, simply because often times we are not doing exactly what we would like to, or life isn’t looking the way we expected it to. We fail to realize that there is intrinsic value to every life experience we go through, whether it is one which is typically labeled ‘good’ or ‘bad’. All human experience can be used as practice in the development of our spiritual powers, in our ability to tune in to our divine inspiration which is intuition.
Few people fully comprehend this essential nature of adversity. As a result of hardship, financial or otherwise, many of us fall into depression after countless years of feeling sorry for ourselves, of pitying ourselves and of harboring a secret hatred within, a gradually developing rage against the world because it fails to provide the magic we so desire, the substance, the grand significance and meaning we live and breathe for. We think we are all meant to be celebrities, singers or actors, or famous revolutionaries or politicians or leaders. Many of us become severely disappointed because of these false idea of grandeur, of seeing “success” as a necessity. It is imperative to our species that we understand something: success is not measured by material goals or status or personal power. Success depends on how we react to daily obstacles, how we treat those who wish us harm, whether we curse or bless those who mock or talk down on us. Come to think of it, success really is based on power. But not personal power. The power by which success can be measured is that immense and holy power which resides within every human being, the power of decency, of integrity, of selflessness, of intuition. Ultimately, we may call it the power of divine inspiration, and there is no power that can compare to, or that even comes remotely close to, this infinite power. How could it be possible if all powers can only exist through this one infinite power?
As we waste away praying to find our purpose or our passion, we become blind to the blessings which make up our life situation, even things we take for granted like our health or our friends and family, or electricity or running water. We have absolutely no trust in God’s plan, in the divine order of things, so we stress and ruin our health over what our passion is and how we can find it, how we will survive and make ends meet and follow our passion all at once. With so much stress on our mind, we cannot take a moment to relax and tune into our inspiration. When we look at the situation this way, we can clearly see that the problem is not that life does not provide inspiration, but rather that, in our ignorance and in our greed, in our restless need for more, we ignore all the simple blessings which are meant to inspire us, blessings which should leave us in a state of awe, such as our breath perhaps, without which none of us could even live on this planet. We cannot see that life in itself is the biggest blessing of all, it is inspiration itself, with all its highs and lows. Life is just as much a part of this Great Spirit as we are, and it has many lessons to teach us if we are willing to pay attention.
As living beings, therefore, and as beings which are inseparable from nature, as God’s children, we all contain this inspiration within us at every moment. We can access this divine inspiration whenever we wish, and the only thing separating us from it is our ingrained belief that there exists no such thing. But inspiration is real, and as long as we remain alert and have our inner eye open to see beyond ignorance, as long as we choose to respect the undeniably inspiring feeling of intuition which we feel within us, then doing so will become our most powerful habit. Divine inspiration turns blind faith into true faith, it turns dreams into reality, and it is the magical force behind all miracles. As long as we spend our time complaining about how pointless life is, about how annoying everything is, I can assure you we will not be able to perceive the blessings which are taking place all around us as well as in our own lives, both in our day to day as well as in the bigger picture of our lives and of collective humanity and life in general.
We all have access to incredible wisdom directly from the source, and with this wisdom we can develop an inner strength, a stubborn and persistent kind of courage that keeps us motivated through the even harshest of tragedies. Inspiration comes from fearlessness. As the Spirit of God is manifesting itself through all our lives, we are all naturally divinely inspired. The more we ignore this the harder it becomes for us to grasp and understand this inspiration within us. This inspiration would transform our lives, it would allow it to positively transform the lives of those we love and even millions more. This inner inspiration would be the solution to every problem, it would enable us to move mountains even. The problem is that we live in fear, and fear does not allow us to proceed, it stifles our progress. Fear is a low emotion which we feel during this earthly existence because we identify solely with our body and with who we are, our personality in this particular incarnation. Fear comes from identification with the individual body, from misunderstanding, from wrong view. Ultimately, fear arises only when we see others as separate from ourselves. Unable to perceive the oneness which is everything, unable to perceive that all that happens is part of God, unable to perceive that there is no need for fear and that all divine inspiration should be acted upon, we struggle to even survive because we become paralyzed, mentally and eventually physically. We may go from here to there but we never make a move, we never pursue our dreams, we never try to give life to the plans we have, and we never even take a moment to sit back, relax, and accept our life as the blessing that it is. We must learn to do this.
After all, life is in a constant state of flux, of continuous change, and even though things may not be going so good for us today, we can always feel happiness as we rejoice at the joy of our friends and family, or of those who we do not know. After all, we are all one, and accepting this is the end of all fear, the beginning of inspiration. Accepting this amazing truth also suggests acceptance of the Great Spirit which resides within us all and in which we all reside. The grace of God is the reason why we are even alive to ponder these ideas. When we realize that we are all alive due to God’s divine mercy, due to the oneness behind all duality, at that point what could possibly incite fear in us? At that point we will find that when we lose our unfounded fear, which is indeed all fear, only then will we find our unconditional inner inspiration. This truth has been known for thousands of years, as we find in the Isha Upanishad: “Who sees all beings in his own self and his own self in all beings, loses all fear.”
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
IN ORDER TO GIVE LIGHT ONE MUST FIRST BURN.
In order to give light, one must first burn. Wise advice from Rumi, one of history’s greatest Sufi mystics. Although great ideas like this are often explained with the noblest intentions, we never really know how they can be interpreted by those who try to comprehend its meaning. Many people, belonging to various religious and non-religious groups, who strongly identify with certain ideologies, seem to think, for example, that being a light unto the world requires that not only they themselves burn, but that they also burn others down with them in the process of spreading their message. People such as terrorists, etc. Yet many of us engage in the same kind of behavior in our daily lives. In our self-righteous attempts to shine a light unto the world, we end up creating problems, because what we believe is the truth, what we believe is the way in which others should live, is not necessarily the way in which they themselves believe they should live. Often we are the ones who are wrong, yet we go around our whole lives spewing nonsense and corrupting the minds of those who are unfortunate enough to hear us.
Too often we think that shining a light requires us to be heroes, to start great political or religious movements, to reform some kind of movement or to help thousands of people in need. All of these can be truly noble pursuits, but we don’t need to achieve some great, outstanding achievement in this life in order to be a light. In fact, the constant feeling of needing to be someone, to be important, has taken hold of many of us who now live based on our ego, telling ourselves that what we need to achieve is for the people, for our families, or for our friends, when it is really for ourselves. Many of us let this idea get in the way of relationships, as we may believe ourselves to be superior to everyone else, and we may try to control the way in which others behave, or shame others for the way they live or think. We need to restrict the number of proclamations we make based on little or no evidence, for they are far too many nowadays. Many of us in today’s world, wish to shed light on topics we feel strongly for or against. Although there are certainly things which should be, and are for the most part, frowned upon by society as a whole, such as any action that harms innocent people, there are other things which are not so clear. Sometimes in an attempt to shed light on something we believe we have the authority to speak on, we end up judging people based on nothing but our own preconceived notions, or on ideas we’ve adopted from our society over time. Both are quite the same really.
When we condemn someone else for something, we often fail to see that we are condemning ourselves. As the expression goes, when you point at someone you’re pointing three fingers back at yourself. There are no good and bad people. We have all been good and bad at some point, and the good we might have done might have simply happened without our good intention even. So was it really a good deed? The fact is that everything which is good is in some way bad, and everything which is bad is in some way good, in the grand scheme of things. There is nothing in this physical plane which escapes the law of duality, of cause and effect, or that is beyond the illusion of separation, of maya. We can only come to an understanding of the oneness beyond the illusion of separation if we accept that all difference is due to illusion, and that all is really the same.
We must realize that, although some crimes might be more severe than others, we are all essentially committing the same sin, to put it in an understandable way. What sin is this? The sin of allowing our lower instincts to take control of us, and to make us act against our better judgement, against our inherent wisdom, against our inner light. We have allowed ignorance to consume us, we have embraced suffering and become it, devoid of divine perception. This transgression leads to every single evil present in our world, it all comes from this same source. So instead of blaming others, blaming the system, the elite, or the bankers and the politicians, or blaming gangs and organized crime, or blaming religion or the media, rather than spending our time assigning blame, we need to humble ourselves and to come to the realization that we are no better than anyone else.
We are all equal in spirit, but not in mind. And speaking of mind, keep in mind that mind is not eternal. Mind, or brain, will come to and end. The person and the body you identified with so closely, which you nurtured so dearly for so many years, will die, will cease to exist in the blink of an eye. Where will you go? Where will you be? We have many religions and philosophies which attempt to provide insight into where we will be after death, but apart from that, there is another way in which we will continue to be: in the hearts and minds we have touched while on this planet, during this incarnation. The legacy we leave behind can either be one of light or one of darkness. And you might ask, well, isn’t everything both light and dark in the end?
The answer is that it is, but only in illusion, only in the limited way in which we perceive the world. No matter how many choices we make, reality on this plane will keep on manifesting itself and generating experiences based on perfect dual balance, or so it will seem to the untrained eye. Behind the scenes of all the suffering and pain, of all the glory and triumph, of all the love and the hate, all our thoughts and actions are bringing about equal opportunities for wrongs to be set right, for past mistakes to be corrected to create a better future. The only wisdom we can leave behind as a legacy to this forever-divided world is that of the oneness behind the illusion, so that the message may reach those who are blessed to receive it, so that they may see past the illusion and may live to teach others about the oneness of it all.
When we live with this perception of everything as one, compassion becomes more natural to us, we become less anxious for situations to go our way, we become less stressed and worried about the future, we become less controlling of those around us and instead we open our minds and get in touch with our intuition in order to honestly evaluate every area of our lives. When we live with this perception of oneness, it becomes harder to judge others, since we see that their mistakes arise from the same state of ignorance which our own mistakes arise from. We begin to see the need to lead by example, as opposed to merely teaching and preaching everywhere we go.
Teaching is good, but more important is walking the talk, living a life of integrity which others can learn from. At times, this may seem impossible in a world filled with so much ignorance. But this helpless feeling can be alleviated by seeing the ignorance itself as an illusion. All ignorance is there so that we may see past it, as a motivational boost for us to keep rising, improving, moving beyond our limited state of perception. Living life in such a truthful and honestly mystical way will no doubt come with its challenges, often great ones at that. But to one who has felt the deep oneness which underlies and pervades all existence, and who feels the necessity to make this known, the task seems more important than even his own personal identity. Such selflessly enlightened souls are definitely ready to burn in order to provide a dazzling light, a bright candle which will shine forever, opening the doors of perception for those brave ones looking to venture past what they think they already know.
Plato said that “those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture will never be understood, let alone believed, by the masses. Martin Luther King Jr., Henry David Thoreau, Mahatma Gandhi, all imprisoned for the noble cause of uniting divided peoples, of rebelling against division and separation and hate. Gandhi was also assassinated for peace by a man who was strongly driven by extreme nationalism. Among artists, John Lennon was assassinated among many other activists for peace throughout the ages. And let’s not forget Jesus whose very message of peace led to his violent death by crucifixion. Sometimes one feels the need to heal this world no matter the consequences. Most of us ignore this sentiment, preferring to go about our daily lives without a care. Those who are brave enough to accept such an uncomfortable challenge are truly heroes, God’s shining lights illuminating the Earth at various point throughout the ages.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
LIFE AND DEATH ARE TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN.
“Death is not the end, but the beginning of a new life. Yes, it is an end of something that is already dead. It is also a crescendo of what we call life, although very few know what life is. They live, but they live in such ignorance that they never encounter their own life. ~ Osho (1931-1990)
What is death? What is life? Cannot these two questions be asked in the same sentence, side by side? Shouldn’t they? Are they not one in the same after all? Life and death are simply two sides of the same coin, and in their seemingly separate form they are another example of the illusion of duality which we project onto the reality we live in. In truth, there is no separation, yet we choose to see the whole of life and nature as separate from us, from our individual being. We go through life passionately protecting this individual being from death, from the grim reaper which will eventually come to harm us and drag our souls to hell, to burn in our deepest fears, or perhaps off to heaven to enjoy all our unfulfilled fantasies. Even the greatest believer in heaven is not willing to take his own life in order to reach its gates as soon as possible, no matter how hard he may be currently struggling on this earthly plane while he still has breath. No matter what we may believe we will encounter after death, we fear the unknown and hold on to the familiar, to the only life we currently know.
Of course, there is nothing wrong with taking care of ourselves, of our health and our bodies, of our mental, emotional and spiritual well-being, but many of us become completely obsessed with our small individual self, to the point that we come to believe that the universe revolves around us; we would do anything to protect our self, no matter how immoral or harmful we might have to behave towards other beings. We have become desensitized and we now kill for sport or for food when it is honestly unnecessary. My purpose is not to judge either, as I myself still haven’t completely given up the habit of consuming meat, although I would like to and am gradually taking on the task. There is an ancient idea, recognized by the sages of various religions. This idea, which the Vedanta teaches so eloquently, of the oneness behind the duality, this is the idea that permeates throughout all religion and ethics, the reason for morality, for love and unconditional friendship. We are all one people, children of the Great Spirit of which nothing can be said by us, since nothing regarding its infinite properties can even begin to be grasped by the finite mind.
This oneness is itself a contradiction to our warped view of things, to our view of the world in which everything is of dual nature, in which everyone is an enemy and is out to get us, in which life itself is a competition, one which we absolutely must win, we simply must come out on top by any means. We are so caught up in illusion that we have no way of perceiving the infinite oneness beyond it all, that Spirit by which the eye can see, that by which the ear can hear, Brahman as explained in the Upanishads. We choose to use separation as our base point, the reference point from which we see and interact with the world. We fail to realize that even death cannot separate us from those around us, so how can life do so? We are always connected as one because the Spirit which gives me life gives you life, the Spirit which is in you is the Spirit within me. What we perceive as separation due to ignorance is in fact all together, all hearts are beating because of this one rhythm, and all our lungs are breathing in life because life is flowing all around us, within us as well as without us.
Death can never erase us, as everything that is simply keeps on being, if not here then somewhere else, if not today then tomorrow or yesterday. Time and space are nothing to the Spirit. We perceive all as separate but our life is simply a flash, just as all other lives are, before we continue on to new adventures. The law of cause and effect makes the cycle continue, and from death we must keep on working out our karma, doing our duty, our dharma no matter where our consciousness may find itself. It is definitely an interesting concept which makes much sense, and as I have always believed, the Spirit of God dwells within us all and is the reason why we have what we call conscience or intuition, why we are able to love and to sacrifice ourselves for others, why many of us devote our lives to serving others, whether our wives or husbands, brothers or sisters, mothers or even distant relatives, be they the poor or the sick, or the orphan and the widow as suggested in the Bible, we all have the ability to love and to care for all others because we are all one, we are not only similar, but we are the same as long as we look beyond our own individual illusions regarding reality.
Compassion, therefore, is a perfectly natural virtue, which many have unfortunately attempted to kill off throughout the centuries because it does not fit their political purpose, or whatever other purpose may drive them. Hate is a very strong force, yet the force of love and of all that is good can never be eradicated off the face of the earth. Even what we see as evil, what is indeed evil, what our fellow human beings do, or what even we ourselves do, while under the influence of ignorance, is indeed evil if that is the word we are to use, yet every action we take is powerless against the infinite love of God which keeps this world and everyone in it alive. We can never disrupt creation, and everything we do is balanced out in order to deliver what is deserved to each person based on their actions in the present, in the past or in the distant past. The law of cause and effect is duality itself, is one of the laws which govern the illusion of maya which we are immersed in. This is one of the seven ancient Hermetic Principles and is a key concept in the Kabbalah as well. Everything brings about its effect, yet there is a oneness above even the laws themselves, including that of cause and effect, and everything falls into place according to the supreme law, according to Divine Will.
Nothing ever dies, everything simply transforms and continues living, just as the universe is in constant motion (Another Hermetic Principle, that of vibration). God is energy, and the laws that are in place in our dimension and all those that may exist are employed under this divine energy’s commands so that everything works perfectly. The vast majority of humanity will fail to comprehend this Divine Will for a long time because everything appears as a contradiction to us. Life and death seem to disagree, as one brings about so much joy, and the other so much pain. But our vision is sadly incomplete, and that is the real problem here. Life not only brings about much joy, it also brings tremendous pain along with it, starting from the very moment of childbirth. The mother experiences excruciating pain to bring into this world a child who is one hundred percent sure to experience his or her fair share of suffering throughout their life experience as well. Why would she bring this baby to life, being aware of this? Because pain is inevitable for as long as we live, and it is contained within life just as much as joy is. And how do we not know that death does not bring joy to those departed? How do we know that there is not a very special reason why they had to leave us? One thing is for sure, at least: Being part of the eternal Spirit of God, as nothing can be without the Spirit, we can never truly die. We are immortal, and there is no reason to grieve for anyone. We must all move along with life.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
THE ROOT OF OUR PROBLEMS: HUMANITY DISCONNECTED FROM ITS TRUE PURPOSE.
“The meaning and purpose of dancing is the dance. Like music also, it is fulfilled in each moment of its course. You do not play a sonata in order to reach the final chord, and if the meaning of things were simply in ends, composers would write nothing but finales.”
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”
~ Alan Watts (1915-1973)
Two days ago, I posted about the harshness of truth, and how we should follow it regardless. Well, with something as true and as important as today’s subject I feel it’s best to get right to the point. Unfortunately, due to many complicated circumstances, many of them of our own creation, we have become a society devoid of meaning and significance, robbed of our true purpose. The extremely high levels of mental afflictions such as debilitating depression and anxiety which we see today are related to the lack of purpose we all feel inside, some of us more than others. We have become a society of people who only do things if there is a secondary purpose to doing them. Disconnected from our higher purpose, many lacking even a notion of such a thing, nothing that we do feels valuable or meaningful, and the days go by like autumn leaves down a river stream. By now it has become quite clear that the dehumanizing, robotic aspects of the kind of society the majority of us live in has completely stripped most of us of our passion to do anything, and sadly many people are just going along, struggling through life and hating every second of it, having nothing meaningful to pursue or to cherish. This is, of course, an illusion. If one can connect with one’s inner being one can always persevere, no matter the situation. But then again, the system which we live in makes even bare survival a tremendous struggle for a lot of people, and we all help it achieve its oppressive goals when we bury ourselves in debt because we cannot control our desires. They promote the products and we run to the store to buy them. We have become accomplices in their own scheme, and we are on the losing end of it. We have played ourselves and now we are paying the price. The point is that, for one reason or another, so many of us are now struggling to even find a purpose to live for. Truthfully, I wish we could all find something which we genuinely love to do and that we could do it for as long as we live with no financial worries. Work becomes play when you do what you love.
Me, I love to make music, among many other things, and when I get in the zone and I start recording my music, editing and replaying it again and again in order to perfect it, I become entranced. Time flies by and I don’t even feel it. I become completely immersed in the music and I become one with the process. I’m chilling in my own musical world, so to speak. No distractions come into my mind throughout the session and I am in an energetic state of flow. A lot of spiritual rituals involve music and dance, and I think the reason why is kind of obvious. I believe these activities are reminders to us that, in life, we do not always need to have such a specific purpose for doing some things. When we obsess over the destination we end up losing the joy which was meant to be part of our journey. We need to see that there is always a purpose behind the scenes, but we don’t need to always stress about it. I think of the concept of faith as being prepared for any opportunity, at the same time as trusting that there is a higher purpose for our lives, which we can connect with at all times. When we spend every second of our lives planning out a future achievement, we often ignore the best of God’s blessings which are right in front of us. Take the workaholic as an example, the one who is convinced that his rushed and busy lifestyle will secure financial stability for his family and take care of education fees down the road. He never considers that his child will also suffer greatly from his absence down the road, maybe even more than he most likely is already. Perhaps this father has vaguely thought through the consequences of his present actions, but yet he deems it definitely more important to secure his child’s financial future. Some people like these might not even be physically absent all the time, yet even when they are around their children, their mind is distant, far, far away, drifting from one work problem to the next, mentally shuffling through clients and contracts and such trivial nonsense.
In order to realize that we have become a society which has lost its sense of purpose, we need only notice how the most important thing on the planet is money. Literally speaking, money itself is simply a symbol for other things which we use, things which we believe have actual purpose. But money itself has no purpose or value at all, it is just a means to and end. Despite this, money has become our god, the highest achievable human goal, the thing that the majority of killers probably kill for, the thing that drives all corruption and injustice when it leads to greed. So, whether we want to accept it or not, the fact is that, these days, money really does make the world go around. We need to take a moment to stop and think about what this means and whether we want this to become our main purpose as well, or whether we want to follow another purpose, a higher purpose. What other purpose could there be to life? I’ll leave that up to you. Learning to accept life and its constant changes is no easy task. Some think that accepting means giving up and never trying to improve your situation in any way. This is not the case at all. In fact, accepting any problem is the first step to solving it, a necessary step no matter what the nature of your problem might be. Accepting means that you are not in denial of your situation, that you have decided to stop living in fear of your demons and devising escape tactics in order to avoid what you know is killing you from within. True acceptance means that you are now ready to do what is needed to change the problem.
An alcoholic who never accepts that he is an alcoholic might come to realize it many decades later once he has lost his family and his health, along with probably much, much more along the way. An alcoholic who accepts that he is alcoholic, however, can then take the necessary steps to free his or herself of such an afflictive addiction. Life is full of changes. Some we will like for sure, some not so much. We have to understand, however, that all change is necessary, and that what is bad to us might be the best news someone else has gotten in a while. There is no such thing as a good day or a bad day, because on the day that you celebrate the birth of your firstborn, another family has just realized that their own is no longer living among them. Can we say that this is really a good day overall? Both events took place within the same day. Can we call it a bad day? Of course, it is a good day. This good is above the duality of what we perceive as bad and good, though. Everything is the way it is meant to be, and when we face an obstacle which we think is too big for us, we need to think again (or stop thinking), and we need to remember (realize) that whatever obstacle we are facing is the exact obstacle we need to face at this moment in time, because we are who we are and we are living the life we are living. Life is alive everywhere, and everything affects everything. Regardless of how individual and separated from other people we may feel, the truth is that everything we do affects the lives of countless others, and everything everyone else does affects us in some way as well. We even affect ourselves in unknown and unexpected ways, both directly and indirectly, without ever having a clue. Nikola Tesla said “Every living being is an engine geared to the wheelwork of the universe. Though seemingly affected only by its immediate surrounding, the sphere of external influence extends to infinite distance.”
We need to stop complaining and acting like victims. It is true that there are many people who are doing evil deeds daily, all throughout the world, and in no way am I defending some of the unspeakable practices some people engage in, nor am I say that what they do is correct or moral. What I am saying is that, although we have free will, everything eventually is arranged into what it needs to be, everything flows where it must no matter how many times we mess up. We cannot ruin God’s creation or throw it off balance, as it is perfect. Every evil and every kindness are surely to be repaid at some point. It might not be immediate but it will happen eventually. The world only seems imperfect to us due to our imperfect and partial view of it. Maya is illusion, it is not real, so it is not even evil as many portray it. We need to break through. Not through some kind of magic but through real life experiences, through ideas and thoughts that are manifested into the collective consciousness, through TV, radio, internet, through books. Books written thousands of years ago are still among the most influential ones today. Did the authors ever imagine they would influence such distant people, both in time and space? Time and space are non-existent, after all, in spirituality, in truth.
There are many avenues through which both good and evil can be repaid, such as some of those mentioned a moment ago. What we call “God’s mysterious ways” is karma, mysterious to us since it is unknown, containing the intersecting and invisible paths that lead to never-ending creation and manifestation. When we stop complaining and we start accepting life as it is and that we as a whole, we as humanity, have caused the problems which we are facing now, even our individual ones, we cannot be angry at God or the universe. We will realize that every experience is meant to help us progress in some way. Even our individual problems are created by our specific attitudes and worldviews, which have been affected by the environment we live in, which will depend not only on the family we are born into and the people who they grew to be through years of living their own lives, but also by the society we live in, which has also been influenced by countless teachers from the past, all of whom had their own teachers and so on. Life is a continuous cycle, and every change that takes place is a change we need to embrace. We need to jump into the dance of life, we need to forget about always having an alternative purpose for living. We need to remember that life is no more than the present moment, and we need to fill the present moment with things that truly matter to us, with thoughts and actions that are conscious and purposeful. We need to start living just to live.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
THERE IS NO RELIGION HIGHER THAN TRUTH.
Every day that passes, hundreds of thousands of babies are born all around the world. It is estimated that about three hundred thousand babies, to be more exact, are born worldwide every single day, into different families, cultures, religions and environments, each under its own unique set of circumstances. In most cases, these circumstances play a big part in producing personality. It’s hard, if not impossible, to fully understand just how much of what we believe and feel as adults, how much of what we think, however confident we may feel about our beliefs and ideas, comes from these elements which we are born into, seemingly by no decision of our own, which surround us as we grow up, things including but not limited to family life and social position. Or how much of who we grow to be is already embedded in our own DNA when we arrive on this planet, just like the essence of a tree is embedded in the smallest seed, and how much of us is perhaps actually something carried over by the spirit from a previous incarnation? Most importantly, from all these possibilities and theories of reality, how can we be so sure of the absolute truth of either one? Are we born with a distinct personality which is further shaped by our life experiences, or is each of us born as a blank slate, another blank page yet to be written in the book of history? If we believe the latter possibility, then who is the author of such a book anyway? Who or what designed this world full of beauty and inspiration, but also overcome by brutality and ignorance? Is this all part of a grand design which we simply cannot comprehend at our level of consciousness? A divine plan perhaps? Or are we all accidents, existing merely by chance – a chaotic concoction of coincidences?
Many religions and philosophies attempt to provide us with answers to these timeless questions, which personally fascinate me almost to the point of obsession, a feeling which manifests in my life as a driving desire to discover the truth hidden deep within the soul of the world and its inhabitants throughout the ages, the perpetual truth masked behind all the advertising, the corruption, the labels, the denominations and the propaganda – the perennial philosophy, as Aldous Huxley would refer to this truth I seek. See, I grew up in a Christian home. My mother, a true follower of Christ, is devout, caring, and kind to all people – the purest person I’ve ever had the privilege to know. She, along with my father, raised me to live with integrity, with respect for everyone and everything. They recited Bible passages to me from a very young age and taught me about God – Jehovah, Jesus, the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. As a young child, I believed what I was told without applying any critical thinking. I found out that when I grew up a bit and started learning more on my own, reading more, wondering more, thinking outside the box, the absolute certainty of many of some of my beliefs didn’t seem so certain at all anymore. I realized that we all have the capacity – no, the duty – to wonder, to inquire into the deepest parts of our spirit. My mother wholeheartedly believes that one must accept Jesus as one’s sole savior and God incarnate in order to reach heaven eternally after death – if not then the alternative is hellfire and suffering, also eternal. I’m not saying that any of this is something I believe or I don’t believe necessarily, but what I am saying is that one must make the effort to investigate and learn from religions and philosophies other than one’s own, in order to compare – not to create division, but to connect the similarities, to dive into the differences, to enrich one’s life experience. An early unease with this situation about hell, and the injustice and cruelty I feel about the idea of it, as well as the possibility that it could be a total invention, a tool for mass mental control, and an unease with not knowing how people can be so convinced of their beliefs beyond doubt, have been like fuel for me, they have ignited the fire of inspiration in my soul to always learn and to grow more, to leave aside all vanity and to follow what is true and good, to always dig deeper and to doubt everything – to believe all but to believe nothing all the same. To believe in one religion exclusively is to shut oneself out of the richness of other cultures, of deeper understanding among brothers and sisters who are also God’s children.
Closing ourselves off from religious and philosophical teachings from many of the world’s great people throughout history and today because they did not or do not share the same label as us is closed-mindedness, it is willful ignorance, and it only results in a loss for ourselves, at least in the immediate sense. Way too much suffering has been caused and is still being caused by people with the idea that they must spread their perceived truth to humanity by any means necessary, disregarding all values in the process. How can we be completely certain of any specific religion or belief unless we consciously expand our horizons and study other people’s beliefs? After all, a child born to a Christian family in America, especially Central or South America where the culture is centred around family values more than in North America, has a high chance of growing up with Christian beliefs and forming a Christian family, while a child born in India might grow up as a Hindu, also respecting and caring for the planet and for humanity, trusting in God, except that he may call God by a different name, or by various names which could even represent the different energies of God at work in the universe – such as the Atman which represents our Spirit, the Divine reflection of God’s essence, referred to as Brahman. In the Middle East, many Muslims bow down daily in reverence to Allah, devout and pious people who have no appetite for destruction and death. They worship the same God of Abraham who founded the Jewish faith and also inspired the faith of the Christian religion and all its subsequent denominations. After all, Allah is just the Arabic word for God. Jews and Arabs are basically cousins, and yet the ceaseless fighting and war is devastating families and communities, all because we can’t put our pride aside, put our differences aside, and coexist as a peaceful people, as vessels of the divine Spirit, without labels and hence without prejudice. It is essential that we all open our minds and hearts to the wisdom of others.
With so many religions, philosophies and ideologies, one at times might wonder how any critically-thinking person can follow one specific religion or belief system and feel completely confident in it. How can one be certain that one’s belief is in fact the ultimate truth of the universe, without ever even considering any of the other “ultimate truths” our fellow humans believe? We have friends who we have known for years, and yet we never ask them about their beliefs because we are so sure about our own. We all walk around in multicultural communities, everyone interacting with each other in a friendly manner, working, playing, socializing, everyone making their earthly existence work out as best as they can by means of constant collaboration. We call ourselves brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, co-workers, friends, relatives, partners, and yet we all might call ourselves by different religious labels. One of us might believe that you and I will reincarnate here on this planet or on some other one, as people or animals or anything, or you might believe we will either go to heaven or hell. If my friend stopped for a moment to think about what his religion teaches him to believe about someone who does not share his same religious belief, he just might conclude that such a person will burn in hell upon death, as if he could accurately judge said person’s purity of character. But just as a reminder to those who see others in this way: Jesus himself warned against attempting to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye as you blindly ignore the log in yours, and he also dared any man without sin to be the first to cast a stone at the woman who was about to be killed for having been caught in the act of adultery. Do not judge others because there is plenty to judge in yourself, not so that you can put yourself own, but so that you can correct any continuous mistakes and destructive habits.
Just as one person might believe his friend will go to hell, another might believe that he will simply drop dead one day and that will be it – the movie’s over and everyone exits the theater. So many beliefs to critically consider, at least if you’re on a mission for the real Truth, not just the convenient one. All of us ordinary citizens pretend that we are so sure of our beliefs, but if each and every one of us would take a moment to try to understand each other’s views on deep, important subjects, we could hardly handle such a conversation for more than a few minutes without our egos getting in the way, starting trouble and leading to fights breaking out. Why is this? Because we have turned personal beliefs, spirituality, religion, and many subjects on humanity and life into delicate, offensive triggers for those who can’t wait for the next opportunity to express anger or feel offended and hurt once again. On our quest to become completely politically correct, we’ve come to live in fear of each other instead of respect. We can’t handle even friendly opposition to our opinions.
This is an issue which has been bothering me quite a bit lately, due to my specific set of circumstances. You see, I was born to two very loving, compassionate and authentic parents, and I already mentioned my mom for a moment. My father is also very religious, or spiritual, depending on your definition of those two words. My dad has described to me how he would wrap a pair of headphones around my mother’s pregnant belly, so that I was being influenced by the words of the Bible before I was ever born. My mother read Bible stories to me since a very young age, and I grew up going to church. I also have some very hazy childhood memories of attending synagogue services, as it can be said that my father has always felt a strong connection with the Jewish faith and people. To be honest, it’s difficult to pin him down to a specific religion, but one thing was always clear with my parents—The Bible is God’s book, and His Holy word. Interpret it as you wish, but it is the only book to interpret. According to some sources, there are approximately thirty thousand denominations within the Christian faith alone, not to mention many other religions and belief systems regarding the universe, ranging from Judaism to Islam, from Buddhism to Hinduism, from atheism to Satanism, from the beliefs of the Native American Navajos, to New Age spirituality. Who is right, if anyone at all? For someone who was born to atheist parents, or into a household in which religion or spirituality do not have much influence, and who came to the point of embracing a specific God or religion later on in life, the answer might be easy. If such a person has gotten to that point in life, then they believe they have found their truth, by walking their own path. No one has imposed their beliefs on this person. They searched and they found, they have experienced something. But is that the case for someone like me, who grew up on Bible stories? Can I truly believe what I believe just like that, without fear of being ignorant?
All the death, the horror, the injustice and the ugliness that dwells inside us as well as all around us is ignored. This enables us to go along our day, minding our own business, pretending everything is fine in the world. After all, we all have enough of our own problems to deal with. How could we possibly make time to listen to other people’s issues, and to care for them? How can we possibly take time to listen to, or read about, other people’s beliefs, and to ponder them, to consider them at the very least? It seems that a lot of religious folks are unfortunately too busy to do these things, although they sure are quick to cast judgement upon others who do not share the same label to define themselves. In fact, however, someone who truly follows the teachings of Christ, and loves his neighbors as himself, who judges none, who teaches love and compassion; someone who walks with the needy like Jesus or Buddha, someone who lends a helping hand to his brethren, that person is walking in the teachings of all enlightened beings since the beginning of time, regardless of his religion or denomination. Such a person simply has no religion because he has no need to impose any belief on anyone else. This person is full of love for himself and for the planet, as he sees the world as family to himself, as identical in nature.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
LIVING BY THE LIGHT OF TRUTH.
All of us know what truth is, but do we really? The truth is often hard to accept, there’s no question about it. This is true because of another phrase which is also true: ignorance is bliss. This phrase itself is very superficial in its explanation however, and if we go just a bit deeper we will realize that the bliss referred to is not actual bliss but merely a fake and fabricated illusion of it. It is the illusory sense of euphoria felt by someone imagining big dreams blossoming in their own near future, completely unaware of an illness which will claim their life very soon and which is already growing inside their body, destined to eventually put an end to such dreams. The great feeling of attempting to live in a false future as we ignore the blessings which surround us in our current situation is definitely a curse as it hinders our progress and fills our time with idle daydreaming. Let’s not forget that any and every conception of the future is pure fantasy since it is only real in the thought realm within our own minds. Ignorance cannot be real bliss because, by definition, it includes not knowing. And we all know that we love to know things more than anything else. There is nothing that can be done without knowledge. After all, knowledge is power, right? So, can we be blissful without knowledge? Can we say that we are truly happy if our happiness is a product of not being fully aware of the full picture, of the true scope of what’s going on, of the true state of our lives? If knowledge is power, can we be blissful without any power at all? Without control of our minds and lives?
Many people would respond affirmatively, but in reality, they would be completely crushed by a loss of even a minute amount of whatever power they currently hold over their own life and their perception of it. When one begins losing control over one’s thoughts and emotions to the point where one can no longer discern between reality and fantasy, one is diagnosed as a psychotic and possibly treated as a schizophrenic. Others, upon reaching old age, are afflicted by that horribly debilitating disease of Alzheimer’s. Not knowing is a curse. Ignorance is terrifying. Yet this sort of ignorant and completely carefree attitude towards life is promoted every day, all day, to everyone everywhere, as we are encouraged by others and by ourselves to lie to ourselves, to seek so-called happiness (which is most of the time just cheap pleasure, in the minds of the masses) over meaning, over a life purpose or a legacy to leave behind. The system which society is based upon is set up in such a way that it exploits the human need for meaning and purpose, our very will, the essential engine of the human spirit, reducing it to a tool within the physical body, redirected towards mere survival by a system of debt slavery, and although there are people behind this, we are the only ones to blame. “There is a path of joy and there is the path of pleasure. Pondering on them, the wise one chooses the path of joy; the fool takes the path of pleasure.” ~ Katha Upanishad 1:2:2
The more we choose to value petty pleasures over noble pursuits, the more ignorant we become to what is going on in our world and in our own lives, souls and minds as well as those of our fellow human beings. We are very quickly becoming detached and disconnected. The more we choose to live in blissful ignorance, without facing the terrible truths that keep us shackled, without searching for the deeper meaning which we know this life definitely has, without attempting to free ourselves of cultural and social conditioning, without coming to the realization that the truth is an imperative part of ourselves which cannot be neglected or ignored for long, the further away we will stray from truth, and we will surely become confused and corrupt. God is truth, everything that is true comes from God, and it has to be faced no matter what it may be. God dwells within us, so truth is what gives us life, it is our very spirit. We cannot exist without truth, and that is why we are on a never-ending quest for wisdom, because we feel a spark of this divine truth within us, we know that life is permeated by this truth, this magic, and we want to find out more about what it means. “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”, said Jesus. Truth and life were synonymous to Jesus, and it is obvious that we cannot have life in the Father, in God the creator of the universe, the Almighty Power which maintains all else alive, which allows everything else to be for eternity, as long as we keep focusing our lives around illusions and ignoring reality.
Truth cannot be escaped. It must be embraced and used as the main tool in our quest to uncover deeper truth. The ocean of truth is vast, beyond our wildest dreams and imagination, it is unfathomable by the human mind and unseen to the naked eye. It cannot be described or perceived by the senses. Truth is intuition, and it is the entire basis for faith. There can be no faith without it. There can be no real progress without it. If intuition is not followed it will not dim its voice, but your mind will gradually become damaged, like a defective receiver which cannot pick up a signal for which there is no external interference – the problem is actually internal. There is no problem with the heavenly signal, yet the mind can be degraded in a number of ways, many of which we as a species practice religiously in modern times.
In the age of information, we have more access to truth than ever before, but we also have more access to lies. And because we have been conditioned to ignore the truth and to chase only pleasure, most people love to focus on lies which seem exciting and interesting, instead of on truth which compels them to make a change in their own lives or in the world as a whole, or both. We are afraid of change, just like we are afraid of the unknown. This fear is irrational and it needs to go. We need to use our resources now more than ever before, in order to uncover the divine truth hidden within all that exists. An unconditional and passionate love of truth is the key to unifying all people and evolving as a whole collective consciousness as we move into future times.“The Infinite is the source of joy. There is no joy in the finite. Ask to know the Infinite.” ~ Chandogya Upanishad 7.23
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
ANALYZE YOUR ACTIONS.
Analyze your actions. If you do what you do in order to impress others, then you are doing it based on an inferiority complex. As Eckhart Tolle stated in The Power of Now, once we realize who we really are we come to see that we are neither inferior nor superior to anyone. The Spirit which dwells within us is the same, so in essence we are all the same, no matter how different we might appear. If you have a craft which you are dedicated to, you might notice that ideas are often blocked by wondering too much about what people will think about what you create, whether people will like it, or whether it’s not as good as some other similar works which have been released by others. Comparing ourselves to others is like comparing the fish to the monkey and saying it is stupid because it cannot climb a tree. Not only does this prevent production of whatever it is we want to work on, but it also further intensifies the inferiority complex we are already suffering from. Many of us want to impress others because we want to fit in, we want to be part of a group. We are not satisfied with who we are, we do not love ourselves, and for this reason we look for satisfaction in other people.
A lot of people are horrified by the prospect of ever being alone, not realizing that solitude can be one of the biggest blessings we can receive, as long as we can see it in such a way. We are all born alone and we will die alone. We cannot take anyone with us when we die. So why do we waste what little time we have on this planet attempting to fit in and to impress others? Have you ever thought that maybe you have something completely unique which only you can share with the world? How can you let this inner light shine if you are always afraid to be your true self and stand out? An inferiority complex is something that can greatly impact a person’s entire life and render them unable to do anything they wish to do. People spend decades stuck in shame because they fail to live up to the expectations of their peers or parents. And most recently, in the new technological world of social media, everyone is trying to impress everyone else. The problem is that we now have a platform where people can shock others and be seen without possessing any real talent whatsoever. There’s even been several incidents of people broadcasting violence and death on Facebook Live. We have become so deranged that people are willing to completely throw away their integrity and dignity in order to get their fifteen minutes of internet fame. Also, why is it that people love to stand out by doing things that are wrong? Why don’t we see more news about good deeds being done, why are we not so impressed by someone giving food to a homeless person? We want to stand out but only at certain things which society makes it cool to stand out at. When it comes to integrity, to truth, to true friendship, to saying what needs to be said even though it might offend others, none of us want to stand out. We are afraid of being ridiculed and even persecuted, and this fear is somewhat based on reality.
The people who have tried to preach truth to the masses never got the respect and attention they deserved during their time on Earth. Still, they understood that the truth is more important than any individual life, including their own, and they were prepared to put themselves aside and to immerse themselves in this truth and its meaning. The truth became a part of them until the point when they could no longer help but to live and teach the truth. People are often bothered by truth since it goes against their vices, against their various ways of cheating and scamming, against their vulgar forms of entertainment, of to themselves, of keeping themselves distracted. What is essential is that if someone attempts to teach the truth, he or she should not only speak it, but should live it as well. They must lead by example so that they will not be labelled as hypocrites. Such a person has a greater chance of influencing others than someone who talks and talks but shows no positive results, no positive changes. Always be humble, and don’t exclude yourself from your teachings. Don’t pretend to be superior to anyone because you are now living in a healthier or more spiritual way. This only shows that you have yet to transcend your ego. Listen attentively to everyone you meet, don’t discard anyone as inferior. Everyone has something to teach us, and even an immature statement might make us reflect on why such a person thinks the way they do and might help us to understand and relate to them better.
We can learn from all situations in life, and we must strive to do so. We must have an open mind and heart and be willing to humble ourselves. We must be bold and exercise our willpower as we put our actions in God’s hands. We need to be courageous and speak the truth no matter what the consequences might be. We need to trust that whatever the outcome is, it will be for the better. We need not worry about whether people will like what we do, or whether they will accept us. If we do what we do with the right intention and we trust in the outcome, then whatever happens will be meant to happen. If we lose friends because of staying true then so be it. Remember Buddha’s words, “It is better to be alone that with those who hinder your progress.” Focus on progress, true progress, not materialistic and selfish progress which gives a false illusion of being better off than others, a false illusion of security. Instead, seek to progress in the way you interact with your family and friends, seek to progress in how honest and true you are to yourself, seek to progress in any art or passion you might have, pursue progress in attaining control over your mind and your emotions, progress in becoming happier and more fulfilled, in realizing that you are a manifestation of the Divine Spirit, and that you are not inferior to anyone, no matter what you may have done in the past or what situation you may find yourself in now. All that happens on Earth is a learning lesson which is meant to guide us closer to the truth. In this way, nothing is truly good or bad, and everything is necessary.
Our paths can be straightened out no matter how far along in our journey we are. God creates order out of chaos and opens doors where there were none before. All we need to do is analyze our actions, make the necessary changes, and then trust. Then we can be ourselves without fear, then we can serve the purpose we were meant to, to be a light and a reminder of our true spiritual heritage to all people we may encounter in our lives, whether by speech or by silent example. We are influencing people at all times, even in memory, even by actions which we performed many years ago. Don’t put yourself down because of past mistakes, this will only drain your energy, your will, the power which you absolutely need in order to make the necessary changes now. Instead of beating yourself up, accept that what is done is done, and the only thing left to focus on now is the present, living righteously in the present moment, during every present moment of our lives. If we remain conscious and aware at all times of the spirit we are, we will always realize how silly and pointless it is to try to impress others. We will lose the fear of speaking out, and we will become sincerely inspired speakers spreading God’s words and the divine way to the world. Amen.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
BEYOND THE VEIL OF MAYA: REUNITING WITH THE SOURCE.
Life will never cease to present us with experiences which challenge our entire conception of being, with tests which we must accomplish, with goals which are to be achieved, and with challenges to overcome. Such is the nature of life, and the person who cannot accept this and make the best of it is doomed to a life of misery. I thank God I no longer feel the resentment I felt when I believed that all was mine, when I boasted and bragged in a vain attempt to uplift my own broken ego. I am thankful that now I feel somewhat at peace without believing that everything is all sunshine and roses, so to speak. The dual nature of the very dimension in which we live in is the cause of life’s misfortunes, as well as the cause of life’s greatest blessings. Nowadays, many modern-day spiritual seekers equate maya, or illusion, one of the main concepts in the Hindu philosophical system, with negativity and all that is evil and deceitful. This is not the case however. Even the good which comes about is simply the effect of another cause, the effect of our karma. The law of cause and effect is in itself dual in nature, and our very nature as humans, not to mention that of everything else on the planet we are all so familiar with, is also dual.
We need only study the basic qualities of the atom, the very essence of everything physical. Maya is the illusion of duality, the illusion of good and evil. It is interesting to ponder whether the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that got Adam and Eve expelled from Eden might really be a representation of the knowledge, or consciousness rather, of duality which we now experience. Perhaps, prior to consuming the fruit of the forbidden tree, Adam and Eve were not ashamed of their naked genitals because physical sex as we now know it was not needed. When God kicked both Adam and Eve out of Paradise he cursed woman with the prophecy that she would bear children in extreme pain for eternity, which could mean that the need for survival, or the animal instinct of attraction and sex, began at that point. This might then also signify the beginning of the birth/death cycle as we know it. Perhaps Adam and Eve were not incarnated human beings like you and I, but rather the complete state of the primeval soul, with both its masculine and feminine qualities connected a whole, in oneness. More on this can be studied in Hermeticism, as one of the seven Hermetic principle is one of gender. Physically, we are either born male or female, and when these dual forces are connected in intercourse a new soul, a new field of spiritual consciousness, is summoned into a new human life, to balance and unite never-ending dual forces which strike a blow at every corer and which must be endured and overcome for a lifetime.
We are filled with joy when a new life is received by its loving and excited family, and yet we mourn when our loved ones die and return to that place of infinite life, to the life source from which they originally came. We surely know that death must come, and that it is as natural as life. This life, along with the death that comes to us all at the end of it, is an illusion. It is an illusion in the sense that we are not confined to this physical reality, and in fact physical reality is subject to change with enough spiritual power which is derived from continuous contemplation and mindful meditation on the oneness of all things. None of this is intended to give one an impression that this life should be discarded and treated as a mere game, as a distraction before the real reality which is yet to come. This is not what is meant. On the contrary, this life was given to us so that we may reconnect with the Divine consciousness which was inherent to us before the curse of Eden. When we practice living in oneness with ourselves and the world around us, the positive side of life will begin to stand out to us because we will have begun developing a true sense of joy, of a joy that transcends both pleasure and pain.
This joy is omnipresent and is not confined to the laws of time and space since it is the joy of connection with the Divine Spirit, the source from which all laws come into existence. This joy, like nothing else, allows one to live happily in this life without anxious or desperate expectation of the next life or dimension he might reach, or of the next moment or day, month or year. During this life, we must not dismay at the troubles which confront us. It is essential to our will that we actually practice putting into practice what we know to be the right thing. How can we know what is the right thing? We all have been blessed with intuition, just as we all have instincts, animalistic instincts to be more specific. We all are born under the veil of illusion. If we allow life’s circumstances, whatever they may be, to make us forget our Divine spiritual nature then we will base our lives on ideas of separation. We will see the world as a battlefield and we will feel the need to strategize at all times, to formulate schemes to get ahead of the rest of them, of the apparent competition. We might be highly motivated and might be achieving things and acquiring tons of possessions, and we could be doing it in an honest way. Even then, the root of this desire to achieve and to accumulate might be the cause of a deeper desire to become better than the neighbors and just about everyone else in the world for that matter. When we have billions of people in the world who are approaching their every situation with this kind of mentality, then we only need a system which pushes further (organized) division upon the masses in order to ignite the flame of hatred and violence which is much needed in the plans of the orchestrators of such disasters as the biggest and bloodiest wars of human history. Unfortunately, we do have such a system in place, globally.
I hope we can all take a moment to realize that separation and division leads to conflict and bloodshed, to hatred which spans out over continents and centuries. This is why it is imperative that we all unite, regardless of differences. Although this world is dual in its nature, it was given to us so that we may exercise our perception of the oneness within ourselves as well as everything which surrounds us. When we practice this on a regular basis we become more peaceful, we become less concerned with proving to everyone that we are right, we become less attached to possessions and to positions, to titles and to monetary gain. When we see that even nature and the animals are all part of this oneness, we understand that there is a much deeper purpose and meaning to just about everything. When we start to appreciate the connections and the synchronicity which weaves everything together in the wonderful web of life we begin to see magical things happening, even if they are simple things. Perhaps these things have been happening all along and yet we have failed to notice, since we have been so caught up in the duality of things, in enjoying physical pleasure and avoiding all pain. We are unconsciously attached to both. They make up our daily preoccupations. Christ has advised us to worry about the present moment only.
Pain is often needed in order for purpose to flourish. Too many us of today are afraid of positive pain, and for this reason we give up on having a purpose. We find it much more comfortable to conform and to settle for things and situations that we know we are meant to rise above. Little do we know that by robbing ourselves of our purpose we rob ourselves of our joy, that unconditional joy which is an essential part of who we really are. When we ignore this joy, everything becomes monotonous, and not seeing the deeper purpose, the joy of the oneness behind all forms, we turn to petty physical pleasures for satisfaction, yet we never do find it. Similarly, every little thing which we do not like becomes a tragedy which we cannot bear.
There is no greater evidence for the oneness of everything than can be found in spiritual religion. People who claim a religious label yet do not follow their own faith in reality, and yet judge others who identify as followers of a different faith, claiming to know the ultimate truth. The esoteric wisdom of every religion points to the same thing, and ignorant fools are the ones who fight and kill in God’s name, no matter how they may call God or what religion they may claim. In truth, we are all partly fools and partly geniuses. We all possess God’s divine wisdom, but we are all susceptible to the bonds of material servitude, which will take hold of us if we are attracted to the illusions of pleasure, or if we run with passion from the jaws of pain. We must stand strong and endure whatever may come, and we must acknowledge that in this world, just as no man is purely good or purely bad, the same is true of every situation. The worst possible tragedy can not be seen as bad or unfortunate in the sense that one can always learn a lesson. When one learns a powerful lesson and it is internalized it has the power to transform one’s life forever. Such is the nature of life. Everything, pleasure and pain, comes and goes in cycles, and it is all meant to teach us something if we only open up to the teaching and we stop becoming attached to our emotions or our sense of entitlement. Jesus taught us not to make treasures on this earth, Buddha taught non-attachment to anything and that life is suffering, yet one must rise above it. The Tao is the Way past the duality represented in the yin and yang symbol, which also has a dot of the opposite color in both the black and white side, representing the good and bad which is apparently inherent in everything. The Vedanta teaches us that everything is duality, yet the Atman or the spirit, the spark of God within us is the oneness which encompasses the whole of life, the bright light that can help us break the perception of illusion which surrounds us. The Kabbalah teaches that God became divided from this world through an ignorance of His power, and that our physical plane is a manifestation of infinite desire. All useless and torturous desire can cease if we can only find our connection to our true desire, to the only true desire of all creation: to reunite with the Divine Source, the become one and to break free of the chains of duality which seem so real. After all, the very word ‘religion’ comes from the Latin ‘re-ligare’, to reunite.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
MAN’S SEARCH FOR MEANING: THE SPACE BETWEEN STIMULUS AND RESPONSE.
One of the greatest victories we can achieve in life is the mental, emotional and spiritual victory over inevitable circumstances and the struggles they create. If someone like ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’ author Viktor Frankl, who endured and overcame extreme tragedy and horror in his life, having lost most of his family in various concentration camps during World War II, can see the opportunity for growth that is dormant within pain and adversity, then none of us can really believe that we have any excuse to simply give up and allow life’s circumstances to get the best of us and bring us down. What I can understand to be the meaning of Frankl’s wonderful quote is that, between any given situation we face and our reaction to it, there is what he calls a ‘space’, a moment of introspection. When we enter this sacred space, it may feel as if time has stopped, as if we are suddenly struck by pure timeless realization. We are saved by a mere moment of contemplation, of profound meditation. Many of us have no idea what this space really means, but when one’s life is turned upside down and one is suddenly in a life or death situation from which there is no escape, cultivating this sacred space becomes essential, not only for survival, but for sanity’s sake as well. What this space signifies is nothing but the magical science of intuition. Through the wisdom of a second of silence we find that we are freed from unconscious bondage; we are no longer compelled to react based on raw animal instinct or habitual behavior patterns we have developed over time. Emotion is no longer our master, and we are now free to examine a situation with the light of pure consciousness, with the infallible wisdom of the spirit.
What we find is that this serene space, this intuition that we speak of, allows us to analyze any situation objectively from within the deepest and wisest part of our spirit, that part which is beyond all duality and contradiction and which is connected with God, with the oneness of it all, putting aside even the strongest of emotions and the subtlest yet most sinister sense of entitlement in order to perceive something as it truly is, to perceive it in all honesty and with painfully perfect purity. Purity is painful to those accustomed to the pursuit of pleasure, and at times our intuition will go against what our illusory self wants. It is imperative that we follow our deepest and noblest realizations, which will allow us to remain unshaken through the storms of life. Only then will we be prepared to react appropriately to any unpleasant situation which may arise, or to any confrontation against righteousness. We are not speaking of any superhuman ability, but rather of the deepest part of our being as human beings. We can all learn to carefully control our reactions to external events, and in fact, our overall life satisfaction throughout our journey’s different stages and in general will depend a great deal upon this sole factor. Whether we are able to react calmly and sincerely to the obstacles of life, or whether we will be overcome and mercilessly consumed alive by emotions as destructive as lust and greed, being dragged around by our necks from here to there as unconscious slaves of our own uncontrolled passions.
We have all been guilty of trying to use our circumstances as excuses for why we have not gotten ahead in life and why we never will. We attempt to justify and normalize why we should and always will conform with living mediocre lives far from the true and meaningful works of art we know we were meant to mold our lives into. So many of us want to improve ourselves and the world as a whole, but a profound inability to take control of our own thoughts and actions unfortunately means that we probably will never give life to the creative projects floating around in our unique brains. The pressures of society make us feel that it we fail we will not only be forever labeled and rejected as failures, but that we will never be able to reintegrate into a mediocre life if we ever choose to return to it, having failed in the pursuit of the extraordinary life we always dreamed of. Mediocrity becomes so comfortable because it allows us to go on reacting to things as we please, as we always have, without analyzing and correcting our own behavior, without taking responsibility for improving our lives. The real reason why we fail to get ahead, however, is because we are afraid of pain, we are terrified of struggle, and we lack purpose. The main point in Viktor Frankl’s life-changing book is this: We all need a purpose in order to move forward. Purpose can inspire one to persevere through pain of the worst kind, and even through persecution.
Fear destroys ideas before they are even manifested outside of the thought realm. Too many people see adversity as something to be avoided at all costs, and they fear situations which will remind them of their weakness. They want to stay in mediocre situations that will not demand change of them. We all want to be heroes, but we often fail to see that usually the very same people who have been through and have eventually overcome nightmarish situations are the very same people who have also become some of the most successful and admirable people we know of, people who have made history and who have inspired millions simply by example. Viktor Frankl is someone who I personally admire very much and who I believe we can all learn much from. Again, Frankl lost pretty much his whole family who were executed in concentration camps by the Nazis. Viktor explains in his masterpiece book how he would often notice that whether or not a prisoner had hope of surviving the war or not greatly influenced how long they were able to endure cruel treatment and even live through disease.
We all need motivation in order to survive. We all have goals we want to achieve, projects we want to undertake. After some time living life it becomes clear that we will never be able to achieve these goals if we cannot stand adversity, if we break down in the face of the most insignificant inconvenience. In order to succeed we need to have a purpose. Once we have a purpose of which we are certain then it becomes much easier to avoid the distractions and to get right down to business. Acknowledging our obstacles, we accept what is. Only then can we plan out how we will overcome the obstacles. This gives us purpose, meaning. We can only find purpose if we stop following our own habitual ideas and take a moment to analyze each and every one of them, from the perspective of the spirit, from the serene space we are talking about.
None of us are perfect, and all of us know it. Yet, so many of us want to pretend that we are, even knowing that everyone else also knows we’re not. We want to keep up appearances so we never let anyone know about our creative projects, about the innovative experiences we are looking to have and create in this world. We have all become so consumed by the wanting to belong to the crowd that we ignore original ideas too often simply because they fall outside the box of social norms. Many of us know there are problems in our lives. Sometimes these problems might be dangerous and life-threatening, and imposed upon us by external forces such as in the case of Viktor Frankl and all people who were persecuted, imprisoned and murdered by Nazis and many other oppressive and corrupt groups of people throughout history. Other times our problems are not so life-threatening. In fact, since we lack wisdom due to never getting into that space of wisdom and intuition, we probably cannot even perceive that there is a problem at all, or we might know that there is a problem, but being so advanced in ignorance at this point, we succeed in completely banishing the troubling thought from our minds – for a while. Because of this reason, because the problems maybe appear minor, we choose to ignore them completely, since it is often much more comfortable to simply ignore problems than to work on them. After all, we have never had a glimpse of what our life could be like if we resolved our problems.
We know that if we were to fix this specific problem our life would be better in this specific way. Yet we are comfortable with our dysfunction now that it has become a mental habit. We accept that we are mediocre, that life just sucks and there is not much magic to it, so we sit around and do nothing productive day in and day out, slowly adopting a cynical attitude towards life and the world, complaining that everything is a problem and nothing goes our way. Well, guess what? Your problems are the way you can get things to go your way if you simply choose to stop ignoring them. How do we learn math or science or any other subject in school? We are presented with problems which we must solve day after day until we become accustomed to solving such problems. We come to know that if we want to find the answer, a problem must first be solved. In life however, we refuse to see problems as growth opportunities, as obstacles we must rise above in order to strengthen our character – we fail to see that problem-solving gives life its meaning.
What we all need to do is to realize that we have within ourselves immense power, such as the power to survive a holocaust, to keep on living with purpose even after facing the death of all those we love, to forgive the killer of our child, like the video I saw the other day where a grieving mother hugs and forgives her child’s murderer in court. I personally don’t know if I would be able to do either of these things I have mentioned were I to act in the manner I have in the past, or were I to give in to my own habits and tendencies. The problem is not that human beings cannot do these things, they clearly can. The problem is that too many of us believe we can’t, and so we never try to become such people. As a limited human brain, I cannot do these things, but if I practice tuning into that space of intuition, then every step will become clear and I will overcome in the end. You see, these people like Viktor Frankl, or like the mother who forgave her son’s killer, have made an inner decision. Their determination didn’t overcome adversity and hatred because they were born different from us ordinary people, or because they have a purer spirit than ours. We are all children of God, whose infinite power dwells within us all as one pure and universal spirit. Our spirit cannot become more pure or impure. All that can change is the amount of negative and positive habits in our brains, which are the physical instruments which allow us to perceive reality, both physical and spiritual.
This invincible and godly spirit is capable of rising above emotion, above thought, above comprehensible human logic, and it can make miracles happen. When we become painfully aware of this to the point that we cannot help but live in the holy manner the spirit requires of us, then we will be able to live not only with purpose, but with The Purpose. The highest and only Purpose, after all, is the divine will. Man makes his decisions freely, but all is directed to balance out in the end, all flows and transforms and God’s will is always achieved. Obstacles are God’s will and mercy. They are the consequences of our own evil actions, not as individuals but as humanity, for we are all surely one spirit, and God has embedded into these obstacles the opportunity for us to learn and thrive from them, to derive purpose in correcting these mistakes and finding unity behind duality, finding peace beyond the never-ending conflict on earth which we are all susceptible to, finding the space in which we can be with our spirit amidst all the trials and tribulations.
Create a space. Meditate. Analyze your actions, evaluate your values. Correct your ways and see if your friends follow. If they don’t follow your path, then at least make sure they don’t try to lead you astray from it and if they do then stand firm in the spirit. Our culture has become one of mindless, unproductive desires being acted out in every selfish way imaginable with no regard for anyone else or for the environment which is being affected. We need to realize the importance of living with purpose again, of doing things with meaning. We need to take a moment to reflect on our thoughts and our emotions and to make sure we do not react by escaping from those we find unpleasant, but by facing them, by identifying the problem and by creating a solution. While creating said solution, we must stay present in the moment, and we must not make the process of creating a solution a burden. We must come to love the struggle, the urge to keep on improving; we must finally realize that life’s obstacles are its biggest blessings, since duality is only an illusion, and in the end, all is one, both the good and the bad. Once we realize this it will mean we have finally come to value purpose and meaning in the way we always should have.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
GOD IS WITHIN YOU, AND WITHOUT YOU.
Everything in existence emanates from God, and His Power is present in all things. Nowadays, even within spiritual circles, this tends to be denied as we are slowly becoming more sure and confident in our own powers. Manly P. Hall was a Canadian author and mystic who greatly influenced my early interest in spiritual matters, and who was very aware of the fact earlier stated. He ceaselessly researched pretty much everything that falls within the bounds of spirituality and mysticism. What he found is that all spirituality and religion shares a common thread, that everything divine must come from the divine, it cannot be otherwise. In other words, all people who try to find God are able to find God, regardless of religion or creed.
All throughout the ages people have attempted to get to the source of our deep longing for God, for something much bigger than ourselves. From the earliest mystery schools to the rituals of the ancient native American tribes, to Abrahamic religions and Eastern philosophy, everyone has a theory on God, and a belief in God, or sometimes various beliefs even within one culture. Not many of us realize that Christianity itself is divided into thousands of denominations, each with their own interpretation of the Bible. Many of their interpretations are completely baseless as well since every day fewer and fewer Christians even know what is in the Bible. How can they claim the ultimate truth of something they themselves don’t even study in depth, if at all? We must all become familiar with the beliefs of our families and our communities, and then we most definitely must become familiar with the beliefs and customs of cultures other than our own. Why must we do this? Well, we must do this in order to break the fictional walls of illusion which we have placed between ourselves and others.
Because of religious affiliation, because of superficial association with a simple and worthless label we come to see ourselves as separate from others, divided by culture, by status and class, by religion and belief, by race and attitude towards life and the world. Do we not see that when we do this we are essentially going against the godly nature which is within us and which is a direct reflection of the Divine Spirit, God, or however you may wish to call the supreme deity of the universe who brought everything to be? After all God is just another label or word. Someone who believes in ‘God’ might get offended if someone describes ‘God’ as ‘an Eternal Energy’ within us all. They might call this self-glorification or pantheism, but do Christians not also believe that the Spirit of Christ dwells within us? Does the Bible not also state that we were created in God’s image? Could it be physical or rather spiritual image, or both?
I’m glad that we are slowly but surely waking up, or at least many people in the world are every day, to the fact that none of us are superior or inferior to others, and that all those who seek God shall indeed find God, that indisputable, ineffable power which cannot be done justice if expressed in words or mere human ideas. God is all goodness, all dignity, all integrity, all mutual respect there can ever be. Anyone who denounces God yet imagines God as something different from this is not denouncing God but themselves. God is the union between people and nations, not the division of countries, not the struggle over land and power at the expense of life. We are no one to take life from anyone. Life arises from God’s direct power. Miraculously, life cannot help but happen. It is divinely and infinitely inspired to grow, to expand, just as the universe is in a constant state of expansion, and just as all living things are in a constant state of vibration and transformation.
You need not look farther than your breath or your heartbeat. Why do you think we love music so much and are captivated and compelled to move by a mesmerizing drum sequence? The beat of life is alive within us, and once it stops beating in our bodies, our bodies cease to live. Our bodies then rot and go back to Earth which keeps on growing and expanding from their remains. Our deceased bodies even provide nourishment for worms and other creatures. The cycle of life is alive through God’s power, and even as much as we may try to corrupt the world, everything is always rearranged and balanced in such a way that we can always find an opportunity in any obstacle. We may choose to ignore this, nevertheless it is true.
We must all snap out of the illusion which the system has created. A people divided can never change its circumstances and it can never realized it is being controlled. The system which wants to prevent the world from finding such a unifying truth as God, as the holiness within ourselves, has been hard at work from the dawn of humanity in order to control the minds of free thinkers. We must all move past thinking, in fact, and we must use our simply and divine intuition to realize that we are all one. That truth becomes crystal clear with just one second of honest introspection in which we realize that we have been defending a damaged and corrupted ego all along, a false personality within ourselves. Once this becomes clear we can live out of a place of love for all that exists, realizing that we are divine and unique extensions of God’s ever-creating power. Stop complaining for your circumstances and feeling entitled to eternal bliss and begin sharing that bliss everywhere you go and to everyone you meet. What goes around comes around, and that which you give you shall receive.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
~ Matthew 22:35-40
“Try to realize it’s all within yourself, no-one else can make you change
And to see you’re really only very small
And life flows on within you and without you.”
“When you’ve seen beyond yourself, then you may find, peace of mind is waiting there.”
~ George Harrison, ‘Within You, Without You’ by the Beatles.
FOLLOW YOUR INTUITION!
It is a fact that we all possess the power within ourselves to do what is right, to act with integrity in every situation we may find ourselves in. For those of us who believe this truth and are prepared to begin the work of consciously putting it into practice in our lives, it is essential that we start by becoming completely conscious of our behavior at every moment possible, by becoming aware of our thought processes and our emotional tendencies – only then can we begin to see real progress in the path of strengthening our character. We absolutely must practice our awareness as the basis of the rest of this work, we must take control of our minds instead of allowing our minds to control us. Manly P. Hall spoke of this more in depth in one of his many mind-expanding lectures, which you can listen to here on YouTube, and hopefully it will inspire you as much as it has me.
The concept is that the mind is a tool given to you from birth – to the real You, to your Spirit. Once you accept this and this becomes your reality then the whole idea of will-power becomes a bit silly. You realize that all you – the real You – need to do is to use the tool you have in your head instead of allowing it to use you. You would never consciously decide to sit and watch TV all day as you ignore ad forget about your family and friends and you get fired from your job, would you? No, you won’t do that because you are well aware that the TV is a tool, a tool which is useful for entertainment or information.
Similarly, our mind is a much more important tool to us which can also be used for entertainment or information, yet instead of using it to its maximum extent, we allow it to use us in any and every way possible, as if we were the tools which was created for our minds’ use. We spend hours and days and months and years stuck in our own minds and we allow them to create negative ideas, toxic ideas about ourselves and others, about the world. We allow our minds to separate us from those we love, and from the rest of the world, and we forget about the immortal Spirit we really are. Instead we begin to think of ourselves in terms of ideologies and labels. We must become fully conscious of this, always, in order to avoid falling into mental slavery, or slavery to the mind.
For those of us looking to develop our inner strength in order to delve deeper into universal truths – for the mystics, the philosophers, free-thinkers and the Rebels to the insanity of the world – we must understand that basic morality is always the first step before any progress can be made spiritually. This is mentioned by eminent philosopher and esotericist Rudolf Steiner in his book “How to Know Higher Worlds” and is the reason why the Hindu philosophical and spiritual system of Raja Yoga consists of all the basic elements of ethics and morality, the first step being self-control (Yama), followed by discipline (Niyama). This is the path that eventually leads one up to complete concentration, or realization, Samadhi. The full method is eloquently explained by Swami Vivekananda in his book, also titled “Raja Yoga”. No progress can be made if one does not strive for integrity and righteousness in every area of one’s life.
You may argue that I am no expert in any field, that I never got a university degree, and that for those reasons what I say is something baseless, without evidence, devoid of meaning – a merely personal opinion which can be accepted or rejected. After all, how can I possibly state such bold claims regarding morality and justice? You can definitely choose whether to accept or reject what I say about the real Self and the integrity within us all, and I am well aware that some argue that basic human nature is naturally evil. Many people have endured enormous amounts of severe and senseless pain which has been inflicted on them by other humans, often by people they deeply cared for and trusted, which makes them feel this way. I am aware of the excruciating pain that goes on in the world daily, and yet I am willing to state my belief in God. We must see and understand that pain is inevitable. It has been going on forever and will forever go on because we have decided to disconnect from our basic sense of righteousness, the simple topic of this whole post.
We claim to believe in integrity and justice, but we only enforce it when it benefits us or at least when it doesn’t harm us. Similarly, we employ injustice whenever we see it will be beneficial, and it will be possible to escape unperceived. This is the reason why there is, has always been, and will always be, pain on earth. This is unfortunate reason why Buddha taught us that life is suffering. So yes, I acknowledge that I never graduated from any university, only from high school. I still have time to do it and I just might in the near or distant future, but I sure don’t have any valid reason to delay my spiritual, moral or literary work for lack of a degree, especially if I can shed some light on the path for others in the process. We often judge ourselves and others based on degrees, on papers, on credentials, on status and power and money. I am definitely blessed to say that I have now trained my mind to the point where I don’t look for any of those things previously mentioned in people, and instead I love finding what is truly inside each person’s soul, as it is another manifestation of the Divine Spirit incarnated on Earth.
Like I stated a few moments ago, we all have the power within us to do what is right in each and every situation. We don’t need to study or learn, we just need to be. Books can only guide us so far, they remind us of the simple truth that is. Once we recognize and remember that simple truth, we must move forward by looking within, at our intuition, at that spiritual power which allows us to live for God, to live righteously with both meaning and purpose. Since the time I graduated from high school I have learned about many subjects for hours on my own time, as I had an idea a few years back of developing my own kind of school for myself, to learn about subjects which I am actually interested in in my free time. Spirituality and comparative religion is one of these subjects, one of the main ones, and upon studying various religious, philosophical and mystical systems and their core texts and ideas, I came to the conclusion that what they all teach is essentially the same, and it has been artistically wrapped in myth and metaphor in different ways by and for different people and cultures throughout history.
All of these systems teach that belief in God or Spirit comes from this intuition within, and that we all have God living within us, the Atman reflecting the Brahman, dwelling within the temple of God. Often times however, the God within has been ignored and corrupted as hateful agendas have been disguised behind costumes of spiritual values by people who were motivated by evils such as greed and lust, and when this happened things such as crusades, inquisitions, and more recently, suicide bomber and terrorist attacks were the eventual results. So, for me, what I speak of is just part of what I’ve come to realize during my time on this conscious journey of self-inquiry and self-improvement, as well as from observing and analyzing what is going on and has been going on around the world throughout history. All religious labels are meant to divide, and the mystics of all religions recognize that God is universal and can be known by all, regardless of religion or creed.
I don’t claim to be an expert here, teaching about some advanced occult knowledge, asking you to believe my theory of God or the universe. However, the way I see it, it is clear that if we believe in humanity’s natural and essential good then we must believe in God, and like Buddha, I am not aiming to argue about what God or which God the real God is, since God is only one, only God, and any name given to God is something created by human beings for division’s sake. God is all-pervading, the reason for our being, and our Spirit is God’s life in us. Somehow still, there are those who believe in morality without God, often using all the evil and pain in the world as justification for their belief. They say that morality is enforced by us if we wish to enforce it, and that there is no real force of good in the universe except that which we choose to create, only if we choose to do so. It is unfortunate that people cannot recognize where their own Spirit comes from, but as the physician, alchemist and astrologer Paracelsus stated:
“There is an earthly sun, which is the cause of all heat, and all who are able to see may see the sun; and those who are blind and cannot see him may feel his heat. There is an Eternal Sun, which is the source of all wisdom, and those whose spiritual senses have awakened to life will see that sun and be conscious of His existence; but those who have not attained spiritual consciousness may yet feel His power by an inner faculty which is called Intuition.” ~ Paracelsus (1493-1541)
I believe that you know in the deepest part of your soul, in fact I am certain that you know, that what I say is a simple truth that can be fathomed by all. If we put prideful intellect aside for just one second, if we take the mind off its pedestal for a mere moment of spiritual awareness, all of us can recognize something within us which is much realer than the petty pleasures and pains which we allow to enslave us on a daily basis, and we know that we have the power to be happy and fulfilled. We don’t need to be mystics or occultists, or monks or nuns to realize that within us is something much deeper. We can choose to ignore it for some time if we wish, but it will not go away no matter what we do. The very reason why and for which I live will never depart from me, lest there cease to be a me, and I do not mean that in a physical sense. My physical body will definitely come to its end, as do all earthly things. This is why Jesus taught us not to make treasures for ourselves in this world, and why Buddha preached non-attachment to the world, why devout followers of God might often retreat from the world for the most part in order to follow a life of piety as monks, as disciples of Divinity, dead to desire.
This truth about the real Self is a truth so true that it has been taken for granted by humanity for so long, and this has caused it to become invisible to us. We have become blind to this magic which is all around us and in fact within us, so we can’t help but fail to realize its full potential in our lives. Whether or not we can come back to a state of awareness in which we can perceive this magic once again all depends on how conscious and aware we are of our mental processes and behavior patterns on a moment-to-moment basis. Often when we make a grave mistake, we later come to realize that we did it following our immediate instinct, the immediate emotion or desire, the impulse which led us to act. We followed this impulse without any prior examination of the consequences, or more importantly, of whether this is truly an action of our real Self. Sometimes we lie, we steal, we cheat, and we even kill for personal convenience, and we do so because we have become trapped in a perpetual state of ignorance.
We continuously ignore such basic universal laws which have been taught to us by the facts of history as well as by the greatest philosophers, artists and mystics of the past. For those of us on the path of awakening and living life the way it is meant to be lived, let us remember at all times that, although facing life realistically as well as positively can be an extremely difficult challenge, we always have the ability to train our consciousness in order to fixate it on the present moment in order to know what is right and wrong in the current situation. We all possess the Spirit of intuition, which is not instinct but quite the opposite. Instinct is the acquired nature of the mind, while intuition is the knowledge that shines through from beyond our mind. If we don’t follow our intuition of what is right and wrong, soon we will become desensitized to evil completely, and at that point we are steady on the road to perdition. On the other hand, the more we practice listening to our intuition in our daily lives, the more integrity and strength of character we will cultivate.
We must also believe that we have this power within us, since it is true that faith can move mountains. I for one believe that it would not be undoubtedly impossible for us to be able to physically move mountains with faith, were it not for the fact that even a most pious person who claims to have faith that he will move a mountain will at the same time have a thought cross his feeble mind made of matter, a thought that tells him that he obviously cannot move a mountain with his mind, that tells him he’s going crazy. We all must have some doubt to begin with, since we don’t know exactly why or how we came to be on this earth as a species. Our mind is not a flawless thing, it is a product of duality, and it has a left and right brain. The price for sin is confusion according to the Bible, and I’m sure no one is willing to disagree that we live in a world of total confusion these days.
Eckhart Tolle says in his wonderful book ‘A New Earth’ that “sin” really means missing the mark of our purpose on this planet, and that the word’s terrifying connotations must be removed so that we may work on our pains as a people. Eckhart claims that the word was translated wrongly from the Greek Biblical text. I for one have not investigated this myself, although I know that many mistranslations of the Bible are indeed real. Regardless, one thing that cannot be denied is that we have definitely missed the mark as a species. We have missed the purpose for which we came to be on this planet. The clearest idea of our life purpose that we can all conceive is love. Love contains within many attributes which are discussed by various religions. All can agree on the nature of love, and we all know it as the greatest good.
The Beatles sang to the world during a time in which young people began to open their minds and break socially engineered mentalities, began fighting for peace and prosperity for the world as a whole. What was their advice? “All you need is Love. Love is all you need.” My dear brothers and sisters, let us not pretend that we do not know what is right. Let us not feel entitled to cuss and complain about our brothers, friends or co-workers because they did something we didn’t like, or about strangers because they cut in front of us at the parking lot. We all know that things are as they must be, and we all know that complaining achieves nothing but misery, a melancholic misery which can quickly turn into a life-consuming sense of constant crisis, a label to identify with. Leave aside all that you know to be harmful to your inner Being. Remove all the nonsense, and you will find the wisdom which is already within you, all the strength of character you will ever need.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
LEARNING FROM THE PAST:
MISTAKES ARE MEANT TO BE MADE
Take a moment to think back to the past – how incredible it is: the subtlety with which time passes. Take any given memory, any scenario, and follow its consequences as far as you can into the present. Think of any direct consequences as well as indirect, abstract ones. The law of cause and effect is active in our world, and all actions have an infinite amount of effects which we cannot perceive or even begin to imagine. Vibrations are emitted and received by us all, even at the subconscious level. New ideas which we hear and see are constantly merging within our minds, forming pathways to endless possibilities, slowly taking shape, to be manifested at some point, somehow, somewhere. As a person, you can think back on major events in your life as well as small ones, and you can follow their effects to see where they have brought you. Like Bob Marley inquired of us through his powerful music, let us ask ourselves if we love the life we live, let’s really begin to sincerely question our life satisfaction. If we are not where we would like to be and we cannot figure out why, then the answer lies in our past. The answer lies in the habits and behaviors we’ve allowed to be built into us by the past we have lived. If we examine the past and everything that brought us to this point, we can learn from our mistakes and our achievements, and as this becomes a habit we can begin to create change in ways we never imagined we could before – or perhaps we imagined but we dared not believe. Once we have mastered this practice of self-evaluation, we can do the same with major events which have taken place in the world.
Now, although the outcome of this practice is all for the good, we cannot underestimate the power of inquiring into the worst moments of our past, both individually and collectively. We can study many inspiring moments – independence days, liberation days, revolutions, but we can also study and reflect on many unfortunate events which have taken place in our planet, such as catastrophes, war, massacres, inquisitions, holocausts, genocide, natural disasters. We can and must – all of us – learn from the past, not only our own, but the collective past that makes up what is known as human history, of every culture and civilization – how it rose and how it fell. The goal is to examine the past from a present point of view, from your current, more evolved standpoint, after having fully recognized and understood the position of the people of the past, of course. If what we are examining is a past evil, then it must be a perfect example to us of how not to behave in the present and future. We cannot however, under any circumstances, allow past memories to drag us through the feelings we felt during those times in our own lives, during times when we felt insecurity and fear, or shame or guilt, or anger or hate, or unbearable attachment to someone or something. And we certainly cannot carry around resentment for something terrible that was done to our ancestors, whether it happened hundreds or thousands of years ago. We simply cannot get emotionally involved with the past if we wish to sincerely examine it and learn for our own benefit and improvement as well as that of the world and the universe as a whole.
We need to look at our past selves as the ego’s identity at that moment, and we cannot begin to beat ourselves up for what we have done. We have to examine without emotion, frozen cold, as if we were observing someone else’s life – it is always easier to see what others are doing wrong than what we ourselves are doing wrong, quite simply because we are attached to our “life”, meaning our past. We fail to realize that the past is not alive, it is not real. All we have now are memories, stored in our brains – imperfect, fleeting memories. These memories allow us to evolve, to renew ourselves, to never make the same mistake again. We need not look too far into history to see how the various situations of the past, both good and bad, can be applied to the present in some form. Any culture’s history teaches us a lesson we can apply in our own lives, every philosophical and spiritual text is a glimpse into the wisdom of past cultures and civilizations, of devoted and inspired men and women. Like them, if we look carefully and calmly into the past we will probably find that there has been a lot pain. Pain is necessary to toughen us up, and pleasure is necessary so we can appreciate life. Too much of either will end in evil, and this is something we can all find if we look at our past or the past of the human species. The endless desire, the passion and the hunger for more – more land, more wealth, more people to control – is what has caused such calamities as those that still go on today – the conquest of land at the expense and death of innocent women and children, the killing of millions of people because of a disagreement in ideas and ideals, the manipulation of the mind for monetary gain. It all connects us back to now.
Take a look at society and see how the system still embraces evil at its core. In Venezuela the people currently starve and there are simply no basic supplies such as toilet paper. People are leaving and abandoning their children. Protesters have been killed in peaceful marches against armed government forces. People recently stopped rioting in my home country of Honduras, when the protesting created no change at all, except for destruction of public property, businesses and banks. The corrupt government in Nicaragua, Honduras’ neighbor, which has basically been in power for over thirty years is on the brink of being overthrown. Lula, the former president of Brazil has been sentenced to prison for twelve years for money laundering and corruption. Once they had pleasure, fancy cars and clothes, money stacked to the ceiling. Now they sit in jail. Big drug lords and their families are murdered every day. Yet the musicians promote drug dealing and consuming. The pharmaceutical industry promotes the use of antidepressants and pain pills, sleeping pills. While they get rich, we now have more school shootings than ever before, as well as opiate addiction and overdose. Many people get drunk to the point of having no control over themselves and end up killing innocent people when they get behind the wheel. Actions have reactions, consequences. Pleasure leads to pain quite often, and not all pleasure is the same. Neither is all pain equal. Some is inevitable such as the death of a parent, but some we create for ourselves since we refuse to let go of our attachments to things or people. Study the links, the connections, the works that have brought you to your now, the ideas which you have embraced and have led you to this moment, examine the ideas that contributed to the concertizing of those bigger ideas. Examine what you felt or thought about a certain situation or person at any given moment, but do not allow yourself to fall in the feeling again.
Simply examine and see if you were not acting based on your ego, if you were not doing or saying something in order to promote yourself or to brag, or to drag someone else down, or to feel better about yourself, or to belittle someone else for who they are. All of that is ego action, the fake self at work. The ego is the idea that we are alone in a hostile world, and we must compete to survive. It makes us attack, enslave and torture people who don’t believe what we believe. It makes us look down and laugh at those who have less material wealth than us. Only if we remove ourselves from our ego, as well as any bias that might make us agree with any evil committed in the past, or any internal pain that might make us extremely angry or frustrated with the past, can we study the individual and collective past with the Spirit, and recognize exactly how we can apply it to the now.
Inspired people, the people who have in turn inspired nations, were fueled by the powerful ideas put forth to them by their predecessors, ideas of the past. They mixed them with their own ideas. One example of a notable work of literature which has inspired me personally to pursue my idea of the Rebel Movement is Henry David Thoreau’s classic essay “Civil Disobedience.” This short book has inspired many more people apart from myself, one of the most well-known being Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, better known as Mahatma Gandhi, who read “Civil Disobedience” and through it gained a deep confidence and inspiration which compelled him to continue his own movement, his campaign of non-violent civil disobedience in India, decades later after Thoreau’s work was published. India’s independence probably would have come about just the same if “Civil Disobedience” had never been written, but one can never underestimate the power of a noble idea, especially if it is backed by a deep conviction that can be proved. Such was definitely the case with Thoreau. He was a strong-willed individual who chose to sit in jail for tax evasion, on the grounds that it was immoral to pay taxes in support of a government which was involved and funding the Mexican War which was going on at the time. A martyr, he preferred to sacrifice his own freedom than to support an ideal he did not believe in. He was eventually freed when, much to his dismay, a relative who had had just about enough of his nonsense paid the taxes he had refused to pay. What a great example of determination – a past act, a simple yet defiant, a ridiculous and brave act, which can inspire generations forever.
Choose any past event, be it a personal memory or a fact that you know happened. Take any given memory, any scenario, and follow its consequences as far as you can into the present. Think of any direct consequences as well as indirect, abstract ones. The law of cause and effect is active in our world, and all actions have an infinite amount of effects which we cannot perceive or even begin to imagine. If you can’t get too far with the memory or event you have chosen, choose a different one and follow its consequences up until you can’t follow them any longer or until you reach the present moment, whichever comes first. This will depend on the amount of time that has passed since the memory you chose to investigate. Try to connect the dots, so to speak, in order to form the bigger picture of your life. It’s there, just waiting for you to complete it, to find the way. It’s simpler than we often think.
We just need to be ourselves. Think about it. All we know is that we were born on this planet, and for the most part, most of us have no idea why or from where we came to be here. However, the fact is, or seems to be, that we were born on this planet, Planet Earth. We feel a certain way about certain things, and we are bound to act upon those thoughts if we follow through with them from the realm of thought into the realm of action. Many of us, however, confuse thoughts of desire and lust for our true desires, our true goals, those which we were born to achieve. We were all created in a special way, in God’s divine image.
As long as we are truly ourselves, and we follow the highest ideals within us, the thoughts and actions that deep within we know to be correct, then nothing can take us away from our true path of ascension. Learning happens from mistakes, so mistakes are a great help on your life journey, as they provide plenty of insight, if you take a moment to contemplate and discover it. We must learn to learn from the past and yet not to dwell on it emotionally or critically as we do so.
In conclusion, if we make a mistake which at the moment we did not know was a mistake, and we had no ill intention, then there is no real harm done. Yes, we will still have to face consequences of our mistake on the physical plane, but as the true seeker knows, these consequences form part of our learning, and are not to be resented or avoided. If we had no ill will when we committed a mistake, and we learn our lesson and incorporate our new knowledge or wisdom into our lives, then we will not make the same mistake. Our original mistake has therefore turned into a valuable experience to us, as it has provided the fuel needed in order to create change, which arises from true learning, hands-on learning, making mistakes. If you find yourself feeling down at the moment, feeling defeated by life and its stresses, just know that it all passes, and life provides its fair share of pleasure and pain, and all are meant to teach us lessons we must learn. But we must make the conscious choice of constantly analyzing and learning and applying to life. Take a second to breathe, and realize that, if you have learned from your mistake, then you are always right where you need to be, perhaps at a fresh opportunity to try again, and to defeat the devil that has haunted you and kept you chained.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
LIVE IN LOVE, TRUST IN GOD
I was never too organized. Actually, just earlier today I realized I posted something on my blog the other day which it turns out I had already posted months ago! Needless to say I’ve now removed the double post. I remember the countless times my mother complained about my clothes scattered all over the floor of my messy room before I left for school, or about my unmade bed. “What’s the hurry? It will only take you two minutes to make your bed!” she complained in Spanish, in her gentle yet pressing voice. Little did she know I was in a hurry since I had a fat joint of some fine BC bud waiting for me, and since I needed to blaze before class I didn’t have two more minutes to waste. I already knew I would be late, it was the norm for me, but I didn’t want to be extremely late either, or rush to finish the jay. I’ve never been too fond of rules or routines, especially of being on time to events I didn’t want to attend, or places I didn’t want to go. In my high school mind, arriving late to class was a rebellious statement of my discontent with being there, since high school seemed to me as a long, tedious and pointless task, a daily routine which I had to endure on an almost daily basis for no real reason. I had no interest whatsoever in growing up to be a practicing mathematician, scientist or historian, and this narrative in my head made me hate every minute of those classes. Looking back at those times from the perspective I hold today, I am inclined to think I should have rather focused in class and learned what I needed to learn in an efficient manner, and with a positive attitude. Instead, I spent almost half of each schoolyear either skipping class or suspended. You might agree with me. I consider myself to be more mature these days, and yet… there is this one idea that gets to me.
It is true that in general, one must always hold a positive attitude towards all forms of learning, and that school is an essential contributor to a young mind’s development in some areas more than others, so I’m not discrediting school or defending my foolish behavior growing up (although school doesn’t necessarily use its time with students as efficiently or wisely as it could). Neither am I attempting to inspire young kids to do the same, in any way, shape or form. However, if I shift the perspective to a personal one and study my specific situation, I wonder: can I ever have a single regret if I like the moment I am currently living? Not just for myself, but the same goes for anyone else. If we like the situation we are currently in then how can we complain about or regret the past that brought us here, to this present moment? For example, if I had done things differently, and things had turned out differently, would I have met the beautiful and amazing wife I have now grown to love so much? After all, the present moment is always a conclusion of all past moments, including all uncomfortable moments, painful moments in which we were victims of our own ignorance. It is true that I do not condone what I did, the times I lied to my parents, the times I made my family suffer, the times I wasted and the troubles I went through during those crazy times. But if I regret a number of events which took place in the past, am I not also regretting, for example, my relationship and marriage with my wife, or anything else that is good in the present, for that matter? After all, I probably wouldn’t have traveled back to Honduras where I met my wife, had it not been for all the trouble I got myself into up in Canada. It’s a curious thought that I believe deserves mention, especially since this extended trip, along with finally living with my beautiful wife, has really helped me to change for the better in tremendous ways.
The mentioned thought shows me that, although each wrong action comes with its own painful effects, there comes a point for the faithful follower of the truth in which everything aligns once again, the soul is back on track, and it becomes evident that all that bad has been used to create good – it was a sacrifice in way, something we had to endure in order to have a clearer perspective Now, a perspective that will probably spare us plenty of trouble in the future, assuming we get one. What we have witnessed is the alchemical process of the universal transmutation taking place in our lives, and it reminds us, without a doubt, that no matter how disorganized we may be, if we seek the truth sincerely, if we seek to reconnect with our spirit, then our path will be realigned by a divine force, since we are all born and destined to shine. This is the reason why I now try to learn from my mistakes, to analyze them without emotion, – without guilt, regret or anxiety – in order to do better in the future. Regret is just a product of desire and guilt, a mixture which is bound to cause extreme anxiety and stress to its vessel since it makes one feel completely powerless against it. There is nothing we can ever do to change the past because the past no longer exists as we do, in the Now, in the present moment. Sometimes we look at the past and reflect, and we wish we would have done a certain thing in a different way, because in retrospect, it would have been perfect that way! Right? Wrong. The present is perfect just the way it is, and so was the past that led up to it. If the past no longer exists, and the future has not yet existed, then it only makes sense to live in the present, to fully immerse oneself in the happenings of life, the constant energetic interplay behind it all. As you live, try not to identify with the ‘you’ from ten minutes ago, with the ‘you’ from a week ago, from five years ago, or from when you were a kid! – that ‘you’ is now dead. Cut the connection! There is only Now, and you can choose to be the best version of yourself right now, without letting any past baggage block your way to the truth that is today! Reconnect with your spirit, with the divine within.
Let your Rebel Spirit resist and remove any remaining baggage that’s holding you back. Any doubt or insecurity you may be experiencing? Recognize it as a toxic element created by you, molded from your past experiences of self-induced trauma. I say self-induced because, although it may be true that someone else wronged you, it is ultimately you who has internalized the pain and fostered it in your soul, nurtured it with your thoughts and emotions, allowed it to inhabit your mind, turned it into the so-called ‘trauma’. Accept that you have been letting anger and resentment run and ruin you. Take the necessary steps to start building yourself back up at once! To be honest, I have always loved the idea of going wherever life takes me, of enduring obstacles and rising victorious, of becoming someone who is truly spontaneous, getting lost in an adventure everywhere I go, surrounded by beautiful scenery, mountains or valleys with endless trails, blissfully heading nowhere, with no worries and no fears about what may come. I guess then that the reason why I’ve never been too organized is because I’ve never placed too much value on living an organized life with everything planned and mapped out. I am amused by the idea of life suddenly changing in a moment, with one experience or one encounter, one adventure – suddenly, a new door opens up, a new opportunity, a new country, a new people, a new culture. From as far back as I can remember I have had this fantasy in my head, and the perfect image of peace to go along with it. Before I realized that all that we have is Now, and began to live in the present moment, I often expressed this fantasy of mine as a desire to have been born in the sixties, in a more revolutionary time, growing up as a part of the hippie generation. My frustration bubbled up into an aggressive rebellion against authority and established rules, and it got me in a lot of senseless trouble as a sense of rage at modern society grew within me.
I’m glad that I can now see that every person is born in his or her right time and place, and we all have our time to awaken. Just like there is a ton of ignorance in the world today, the same was true for back in the sixties and even further back. In fact, the ignorance of war is what sparked the hippie movement and caused it to unite in the first place. It is our duty to get rid of ignorance little by little, each of us doing our part, no matter what moment in history we might be reading this in (assuming my blog posts will survive the test of time and will inspire millions throughout history in the future)! Each of us is a spirit incarnated with a divine purpose to achieve, a purpose which is linked to the specific period of time in history we are living in. I now know why I have always felt the way I’ve felt, compelled to reveal and never to conceal. The truth shall really set you free. The time to wake up is always now, no matter where we may find ourselves. Any pain, any suffering, any perceived evil can be turned into blessing, it can be transmuted and turned to life. Not only can it, but it should, be transformed. That is our purpose on this planet. We are all alchemists. This truth is now readily available to all like never before in history. Take advantage, learn and teach, be the change you wish to see. Let your inner light shine. Don’t live up to the labels and expectations but surpass them in new and creative, innovative ways. Don’t live to fulfill a mission assigned to you by humanity before you were born, don’t live to please every person on your path – instead live to upset everyone with the truth. Live against the rules but live from the divine spirit. Don’t use being a Rebel as an excuse to be a Devil. Get in touch with your inner spirit, let it guide you. At times you may not understand the decision – but run with it regardless! You will understand the vision soon enough. Live according to your intuition, to the Spirit of God dwelling within. If you do this sincerely, I guarantee you cannot go wrong. You are walking in light, and your path will be realigned no matter what mistakes you may make.
So, I encourage you all to live truthfully, sincerely, with integrity. Just as I am currently being inspired to be, I encourage you to be a reformer, a Rebel, a hero – a person with morals and values in this sick society so devoid of spirituality, a person with enough courage and trust in the world and the universe that you can be open and honest with any of your fellow human beings, with no fear of persecution, with no fear of death, with no hostility and no shame – a person whose highest ideal is the search for the truth and the goodness of life, behind the illusion of evil. To all the spiritual seekers, be true to yourself above all, be true to the truth you know is true, to the Absolute Truth – Love, God. Don’t live to look like you have it all planned out or figured out. Be disorganized, let God organize your life instead. Put it all in God’s hands, put frequencies of love out into the atmosphere, appreciate the blessings and allow them to come alive in your life and all around you. Live in Love and learn from Love. Walk with God, trust in God.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.”
~ Isaiah 37:23
OVERCOMING WRITER’S BLOCK
As an artist, there exists a possibility of words simply flowing from your spirit like water from a fountain – as if they were writing themselves, as if an inner force were pushing them out of you one by one, barely allowing you a moment to get your ideas down on paper. You worry and stress about what you will write, how and when, not realizing that if you were to just take that first leap of faith and you actually sat down with a pen and paper and a determination to write no matter what, you would write without a doubt. If we can move mountains with true faith, then how can you not simply write, am I right? Especially if you love to write as much as you claim you do. Do not move, do not eat, do not drink, do not think, do not worry, just write. Concentrate and write. Writer’s block is a mental excuse. So, am I suggesting that you should write gibberish, utter nonsense?
Not necessarily, but just remember that your best-selling book will not contain all the parts you will eventually edit out later, so just go ahead and write the first sentence that comes to your mind. Yes, the first sentence that comes to your mind, insignificant or uninspiring as you may label it to be. Remember you will not be obliged to show your work to anyone other than yourself once you’re done. If you can’t write for the sake of simply writing, without a commercial aim, at some point then you probably don’t love writing too much. Write without the notion that anyone will read what you write. Make it random and boring if that’s how you’re feeling. Drop any and all mental pressure, let go of insecurities completely, be present with yourself in the moment. Write about anything that comes to mind, think aloud on the page – your job is only to make sure your hand can keep up with the subconscious stream.
Life is a gift given to you, and the same goes for any natural talents. Go ahead and write it even if it is nonsense! After that first sentence write another. Don’t make it too logical, just randomly write another sentence, the sentence that logically follows in your mind, whatever seems to automatically fit. Since these sentences were written in a flash without much use of thought, these sentences come from your subconscious mind, and therefore express ideas or feelings which you are wanting or even needing desperately to get across but just don’t know how because of their abstract and complicated nature. Follow this subconscious stream of creativity, keep writing words, make sure your pen keeps hitting that paper, or your fingers keep on pressing at those keys. You will see that another sentence will naturally follow, as the sentences will have something in common, both having come from your subconscious, which is dwelling upon the same subjects. This similarity is usually the same poetic vibe and maybe theme. After the second sentence, then follows another, and another, and another, and before you know it you find yourself quickly typing away since the words are coming so fast that you struggle to write them all down. A rush of realization runs through you suddenly as you reach a point where you need to stop for a moment just to review what you’ve done in order to clarify to yourself what exactly you were writing about, and what specific point you were trying to get across, since you realize that your ideas have transported you over to a distant land!
Again, all it takes is one sentence to make the difference and get you started. As long as you don’t write anything down, you are overthinking about what to write for your audience. The problem is that you do not know your audience, since no audience exists at this moment. In the present, when your work is being created, all that exists is you and your writing, so embrace this. No matter who your audience is, if you were meant to write, then just write, and the right audience will be reached in due time. I have found this to be quite an effective tool for overcoming writer’s block. Simply write one sentence that comes to your mind. Then, without giving importance to what anyone will think about your work, follow that sentence up with another. The sentence that comes to mind, and thereby to the paper, might be about an idea you’ve been thinking about lately, or maybe about someone you’ve been missing, maybe about the annoying headache you feel, maybe about how grateful you are it’s the weekend! Just write about that! So what if (you think) no one will read it? Write to write. Write to develop your writing. Save a file, and later you can read it and add more details, it may grow to be something big.
Don’t worry too much about staying on topic or dividing up paragraphs – Just write! Remember that this big chunk of disorganized writing will not to be read by anyone else before you finalize the official copy of whatever it is you are writing. All that other secondary stuff ceases to exist now and you are finally free of worries. I repeat for the sake of importance, write for the sake of writing. Write for you. Write for the glory of God, by being thankful that you can live and write and express yourself. All the organizing, the making sure everything is in its right place, the countless reading and re-reading, the editing, that can all wait – it all means nothing if you have nothing written, so spill your soul onto the page! Be the real You, and ignore your mind when it asks you “Will people like what I am writing right now? Why write if I’m not a famous author? Will I be paid for my work? Why am I writing for free, and for no good reason at that?”. Ignore these thoughts of doubt that the mind hits you with. It wants you to agree, to identify with it. The real self however, knows that engaging in one’s passion and creativity and producing inspiring work are blessings far superior, and therefore incomparable to, a mere paycheck, or any sort of recognition. The mind doubts because it is a finite thing, a physical part of your body. It is part of material existence and therefore will surely die one day, and all these ideas of doubt which are the product of social and cultural engineering, will die along with it – rest assured! However, the real You, which experiences and evaluates the thoughts of the mind, and the feelings and sensations of the body, is true, eternal awareness, or being.
This being is of spiritual nature, meaning it is immortal and complete. It is a reflection of the spirit of God in us. For this reason, the real Self cannot experience doubt, or lack of self-worth, because the real Self knows that it has something of immense value to offer this hurting world. If you didn’t know this then why would you be thinking of writing in the first place? The real You not only believes that you can achieve great things – it knows so! The fake you, the image of yourself inside your brain, is a product of what you have learned and experienced on this planet during your time as an individual. What happens is that, since most people spend endless amounts of time satisfying the carnal desires of their mind and body, they become completely identified with the idea the mind creates of itself. As we grow from youth into adulthood, that pure sense of being, and of connection with a wise spirit, or conscience, that knows what is good and bad and advises us of such righteous judgements is lost, and we begin to listen to our mind, therefore giving up all control to a tool which we are actually meant to control. Being only a tool, this mind feels inferior, like it can be discarded for any superior tool that comes around. It must survive and prove its supreme status! Quite a lot of pressure, huh? Spirit, on the other hand – Spirit flows, Spirit is authentic, pure, real, revolutionary, raw!
If only we could enter into that pure state of thoughtlessness, quieting the mind’s incessant chatter, and if we can remain in that state, then we could certainly reconnect with that part of ourselves which truly creates art, the divine spark that dwells within us all and provides us with our spiritual energy at all times; the being behind the mind – immune to writer’s block! If we could radically shift our current perspective on life and begin to get in touch with the goodness of our spirit, which is a reflection of God – with our intuition – then quite possibly the thoughts that circle round and round in our skulls, and the abstract feelings that are bottled up inside all of us, will finally be granted with an outlet to be expressed in a beautiful, poetic and effortless manner in this soulless society that subjects its citizens to such profound pressure, mediocrity and marginalization. We must make a conscious decision to ignore every temptation, every distraction, every insecurity, every feeling of inadequacy which holds us back from trying, from taking the first step and trusting the power of God present in the forces of the universe. We must subdue the mind with the spirit, we cannot, and will not, allow our minds to enslave us. Be FREE! Let your Spirit spill your soul out on the page and let it flow like the endless sea.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
A UNIVERSE OF WONDER
I feel humbled whenever I take a moment to acknowledge that this world is only a small part of the universe. The planet we inhabit forms part of a solar system, which is part of a galaxy – one of many billions that exist according to science. The most recent findings of Stephen Hawking before his death even suggest the possibility of our universe being only one among many. Now, personally I don’t know how this could be possible at all, since I’ve always thought of the universe as infinite, as all there is, as ever-expanding – space, the home of all the galaxies and planets that exist. Although a lot of people who haven’t studied too deep into the topic and into physics in general, such as myself to be honest, don’t fully understand what is being implied by Hawking’s theory, I mention it simply to bring to awareness how little we know about our world and universe, how complicated things actually are when it comes to science, to physics, to the planets, to the essence of existence. We all have our opinions and theories. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has even suggested we might be living in some kind of computer simulation created by some other beings, while others might argue that this is basically the same thing as the belief in God and the Devil, angels and demons, supernatural beings, all watching over us as we live, unaware of their presence, maybe even able to directly influence human affairs. The point is that, no matter how sure we are about what we believe, none of us can ever be fully certain as to how we came to be here, on this particular planet, or why we’re here. The mystery of the universe is magical to ponder, and it can turn one into a hungry seeker of truth. If we learn to stop complaining, to see light in everything rather than darkness and death, we will naturally begin to feel humbler and more grateful for having been blessed to be born into this world which provides the perfect conditions for us, conditions that are essential for human life to thrive, or to even be possible.
Now, despite having cleared up how much there is for us yet to discover and having stressed the fact that we don’t know much of what we think we know, I definitely must defend the notion that there is a real reason why we are here, even if it is just my personal belief. Although our planet is such a small part of the universe, there is definitely a reason for us being born here, even if we don’t know what that reason is. This reason goes beyond money or status, financial progress. Many of us can feel this deep within. Even though we don’t know anything one hundred percent that statement is something I feel very confident about and I’m just being honest when I open up to you all and express it in such an assertive way. Apart from the earth’s fertile condition, most of us are born into the arms of loving, kind parents who raise us and help us to grow, who take pride in our accomplishments and nourish us with positive influence, whether it is mentally, emotionally, physically or spiritually. Those of us who are born into broken homes often find that our troubles, if approached correctly, have a way of leading us to the truth. Whether we are born into a good family or not, we are all born into the family we need to be born into, for whatever reason it may be. We all come from a union between two people, procreation being a divine union which ideally involves trust and companionship and love, the union of both dualistic forces of the yin and yang which merge into oneness, into life – pure magic. There normally tend to be some problems in relationships and marriages as the mind-created egos want to dominate, they feel offended, and they seek to offend. However, behind the scenes of all this mind drama, there is a spiritual union between these two people, an unseen communion, and if they allow this to shine this union will gradually defeat the drama, something I always embrace and cherish in my own marriage. If this union is constantly cherished and expressed – strengthened on a daily basis, with due diligence and discipline, its light is likely to be imparted onto their children, since children (and in fact all humans) learn mostly by example. This is just the way it is, and it blows my mind the way everything is so perfectly structured when it comes to reproduction and the creation of life. How do we know that this is union between man and woman is something spiritual? If you ask two partners to have a baby with certain traits or characteristics, they will not be able to create that specific baby. They only know the physical motions they need to make in order to ignite the behind-the-scenes process which creates the baby. We do not know the exact details of how our bodies grow inside of the human body, how sperm and egg unite to form human thought. On top of this, we have absolutely no clue how exactly consciousness and life come into this body, neither do we know at what point this happens. The fact is there is too much we don’t know, so for something so perfect as life to arise, there has to be something that does know how to create life.
Two connect to make one. One will once again connect with one, then the two will merge and create one once again. It is an obvious message that connection is essential for life. Coincidental messages like this make me sure of the synchronicity of the universe, the incessant flow of life. It’s a sad reality that the sacred nature of sex has been crudely corrupted in the name of consumerism. Unfortunately, as with the subject of sex, too often we limit ourselves to the ideas which are seen as normal by society when it comes to certain topics, or even when it comes to ourselves and our place in the world and the universe. We forget that life is set up for our own good, we forget the miracle that life is, and we become weak and weary, tired of life’s trials and tribulations, seeing nothing good in the bad, and nothing bad in the good. But if you look at the yin yang sign you will notice there is good in all bad and bad in all good, as everything is one in truth. When we begin to forget about the magic of life, about the miracle it really is, we start acting based on our fears and we adopt certain labels or identities for ourselves in order to fit in and to feel safe, to feel that we belong in society, that we are part of the crowd. This allows us to avoid our dreaded fear of rejection and ridicule. When we fear the opinions of others, when we fear failure and rejection, we fear disappointment. When we fear the mere possibility of being ridiculed, of feeling disappointed, we never bother to take the first step towards any new project we might have in mind, since we are terrified that we might make a mistake and ultimately drown in our misery. We become our own harshest critics, killing our ideas at the mental level before they even have a chance to be fully developed. We avoid commitments and challenges because we would rather have it the easy way. We unconsciously reject opportunities because we are afraid to look for them, or to accept them when they come our way. We have become trapped in a fake idea of ourselves, an idea made up of likes and dislikes, of preferences, of judgments, of beliefs, an idea that “I am part of this class of society, of this movement, of this religion, of this race, of this gender, of this nationality, so I must conduct myself and see the world in this specific way.” The result of this is that we begin to identify this earthly body and personality as ourselves, we make our hardships into our identities, we minimize our vision of life and the universe. We begin to imitate others, to live petty, worthless lives that have little soul.
We must remember once again that the universe is marvelous and mysterious, and that our spirit IS the universe. We must remember that we have within us much greater blessings than we can ever gain by reaching material or social success in the world. We have let our ego take control, and it is not allowing us to appreciate the flow of the universe, it is not allowing us to let go of resistance and to simply be. We have to stop, to take a moment to realize that the world is in constant motion, and the forces of nature drive the world towards its proper state at every moment, the courageous force of change is always creating the situations we need. We are not just a label, we do not need to conform to traditions and rituals which serve no purpose to us, which do not build us up, especially those which fill our heads with negative thoughts and ideas, with fear and hate. In this world, a lot of people want to play God and portray their ideas as absolute truth, and this has always been the case. Such a mentality has led to violence and war and unimaginable suffering an innumerable amount of times, something we can all agree on if we study some basic history. Why should we give merit to just anybody’s ideas of us, their ideas about how we should live, about who we should be? The rules they impose, the stereotypes, the labeling, the generalization, the treatment of people as property, just less obvious than a few hundred years back. We need to be bold about being humble, we need to confront injustice and arrogance and avarice and evil, and we need to be reformers, standing up for things we believe to be right and fighting the obvious evils that plague our planet. We need to realize that we are Spirit, we are the reflection of God on this particular planet, and we are alive for a reason that goes way beyond paying bills, watching TV, eating, drinking, sleeping, working.
Society’s expectations of you are collective ideas of how the world should work, but these ideas are thought up by people who are fully focused on financial gain and population control, they are not necessarily, or usually, set up for our own good. We need to live life according to our intuition, and through it our integrity, realizing that this world, these governments, the people who take pride in oppressing others, these people are small in the grand scheme of things, and we should not lower ourselves to their level, but rather we should try to help them to grow spiritually in love, remaining true to our divine nature.
2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
~ Matthew 5:2-11 (KJV)
16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.
~ Matthew 20:16 (KJV)
When we nurture an attitude of fear, a belief of inadequacy, when we make ourselves believe that we are not enough, that we cannot do such and such thing because we are of such and such nature we are sure to fail, as we will never attempt to begin in the first place. Take a risk! Realize you are not a label, you are not who your parent or teacher or preacher wants you to be. You are not who society wants you to be. You are not even who YOU think you are or want to be. Within you is a magic that can move mountains, a faith in God and the universe, a faith that you can achieve what is truly believed, a profound faith which lies at your core, the eternal essence of your being. Learn to trust that the reason for your being here will manifest itself if you stop interfering with it, then stop interfering. Let the blessings come.
In my own life, for example, I have always wanted to travel. I have often wished I could travel the world freely with no money worries, with no complicated visa application processes. However, I soon realized that that idea isn’t very realistic, and I just had to find a way to make money while travelling abroad and making my art. For now, that’s still a work in progress, but what I’m getting at is that how much money we stack up during this lifetime is not what’s most important at all. Too many people put off travel or whatever other great goals or gifts they might have in order to save up money for something else, maybe some new car or new clothes, or to pay for college or a mortgage. So many people live 30 or 40 years of their lives, repeating the same daily routine, the same tedious tasks, day in and day out, in the same cold and crowded city, in the same country, with the same people. If this is not a life wasted then I don’t know a better example. Life consists of constant change, and the world is here for us to explore it, to constantly change the way we live. The whole concept of selling our time for money, what we call a job, a 9-to-5, is a little ridiculous to me. Let’s not mention selling 3 or 4 decades of our lives, years filled with dreams, with energy and health, for some faint recognition and a good pension plan when we retire. This is modern day slavery, and it prevents us from following our true dreams, it keeps us under, consuming products and services for those who designed this cycle (a cycle which can only continue if we maintain our feelings of inadequacy). I was afraid for quite some time, of travelling the world indefinitely, of living as an artist, as a nomad even. I have this thought sometimes, that once you have tried to remove yourself from the system, and have tried your hardest but failed, it will be impossible to reintegrate back into the system. I see now that this is a thought of weakness, a thought created by fear and insecurity, a thought brought into my conditioned mind by years of fear and manipulation. I have let go of this thought, and I’ve chosen to finally live free and to be completely myself, ready to face whatever consequences await me since they are only the consequences of the actions I took while being truly myself – true to my authentic self, to the spirit of life within. To remind me of my decision I got “Live Free” tattooed on my wrist, so I can look at it every day.
In my case, living free meant leaving behind a comfortable life in Canada, and the possibility of building a great career in one of the most developed nations on the Planet, in order to travel the world and immerse myself in other cultures, languages, ideas, religions, philosophies, activities, and customs. What could be better and more therapeutic for a person than to admire the vastness and beauty of the natural world, the masterpiece of all works of art, created by the Great Architect, God, the force behind all that is? What could be more fulfilling for a righteous man, than seeing goodness wherever in the world he may go, seeing children smiling, families enjoying time together, animals relaxing, everywhere in different ways, speaking softly to each other in different languages, yet all speaking the universal language of love. Everything is connected in perfect harmony if perceived correctly, everything is alive by the divine unity behind all the beautiful forms of life, the diversity of the planet and of the universe as a whole. Money comes and goes, an insignificant and feeble piece of paper which we can rip apart with our own two hands, fame and status are even more unreal, complete illusion which serve to trap the human mind in a vain sense of glory, a petty and pathetic sense of achievement, and a lot of arrogance to go along with it. We alone give money or fame their value. In other words, they are worthless if we can see them in that way. Nature, oceans, trees, valleys, mountains, however… the world, the world is divine, created by the hand of God. Music, art, expression, love, kindness, compassion, inspiration – all things which bring us closer to our life purpose. We can all stand in awe wherever we are and admire life’s beauty, in every country, in every continent, in every animal, in every plant, and in every single person. For this reason, I have the goal to travel and to live in various countries, to fully experience the world and its wide variety of cultures! The adventure had already begun, and from now on I plan to focus on continuing it. Until the day we can travel to other planets, there is enough magic and beauty on this planet for a lifetime. Open your mind, open your world. Don’t create labels and boxes for yourself. Don’t stress about petty things of this world, keep your spirit moving towards a higher state, discover the wonder which is dormant within.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“There is a vast world for us, a boundless space beyond and between the fences and the rules. We will travel it freely. We will be okay.”
~ Lauren Oliver, “Pandemonium”
“Perhaps these ancient observatories like Stonehenge perennially impress modern people because modern people have no idea how the Sun, Moon, or stars move. We are too busy watching evening television to care what’s going on in the sky.”
~ Neil deGrasse Tyson
INTERCONNECTEDNESS & INFLUENCE
If we begin to pay close attention to the events which take place in our daily lives, and we begin to see them not as random happenings, but as opportunities for us to learn the lessons we must learn and to practice what we have already learned, it then becomes clear to us how everything that exists is interconnected, and how every moment of our lives is actually filled with deep significance. Everything influences everything else in ways which are completely mysterious and unknown to us, and God is said to work in mysterious ways precisely because we are unaware of the complete system God operates in the universe. In other words, we refer to the ways of God as mysterious due to our extremely limited perceptions of the incredible and indescribable manner in which his radiant, continuously emanating energy unfolds throughout all dimensions of existence, balancing everything out perfectly. This is not meant to imply, however, that life is predestined.
My belief is that free will is real, but so is fate. Human beings have been granted with the amazing capacity for free will, which we can exercise in a negative or positive manner, or most often, in a combination of both throughout a lifetime. What is predestined is the consequence which follows after each action, which flows from the first in accordance with the principle of cause and effect. We can choose our actions, but we cannot choose their consequences, meaning that every action has at least one, but perhaps various, effects to balance it out. Every act of kindness, every smile, every word of encouragement, can radically alter someone’s perspective and worldview, and in turn their life; and the same can be said about any harmful word or destructive action we choose to engage in. We can choose good or evil actions, but since the laws of the universe function accordingly with the Divine wisdom of the Creator, everything will always balance itself out in a karmic manner by way of the effects of any given action.
Even though everything balances itself out eventually, a wise person strives to promote wisdom wherever possible in order to prevent evil, selfish actions, for they are aware that evil actions lead to degradation of the spirit, and cause suffering when their consequences arrive. A wise man knows that if he possesses the knowledge or wisdom, and he has found himself in a situation in which he can be of great service or inspiration by sharing it, it is his duty to share. Therefore, a wise man practices courage, self-sacrifice and self-control and works to discipline each aspect of himself, physical, emotional and spiritual, in order to be a virtuous example to others. The power we all possess to influence others should be regarded as a great responsibility and a privilege and utilized only for righteous purposes. Even when we are not attempting to influence anyone, but simply minding our own business, going about our day, our demeanor or our expressions are enough to give subtle hints to those around us regarding what we are feeling, what is motivating us or demotivating us, what life situation we are currently facing, and how we are reacting to that situation, whether with confidence and courage or with insecurity and fear. If we are always walking around with a miserable attitude and a frown, worrying about how we will pay the rent tomorrow, too fed up with life to enjoy the simple blessings which have been bestowed upon us, then we are bound to influence our children to act in the same way once they are faced with the challenges of their own lives, gradually becoming ungrateful, constantly unsatisfied adults.
As human beings, it is natural for us to imitate behavior which we observe in influential figures, especially when our brains are still developing. Since our parents are our primary example of how life ought to be lived, we tend to connect various ideas inside our minds to create preconceived notions about certain things or concepts. This process is inevitable and it is happening in the minds of all people we encounter. Realizing this can be a great tool for self-development since, once accepting the fact that our negative self-destructive behaviors are so strongly influencing our loved ones to act in the same ways and develop the same negative patterns as us, we feel as if though we must refrain from such actions, out of a sense of duty to their well-being. This not only motivates us to break negative habits and patterns in our own lives, but it also prevents our loved ones from being negatively influence by us, and our sudden change in behavior might even convince them to of how powerful the practices of self-analysis and self-realization really are, leading them to evaluate their own behaviors which might be holding them back. Win-win situation for all!
It is amazing to contemplate the notion that we have within us everything that we require to act as the spark which ignites a passion for self-realization in people’s lives that could last a lifetime, or perhaps even many. This will, in turn, affect everyone who each one of those people will encounter in their lives, especially their children. They will then influence their children who will teach their own children to influence their children and so on, and the cycle will continue long after we are gone from this planet. Our negative or positive ideas will be spread out through the whole world and through the cosmos for decades and centuries, along with every generation, filled with thinkers, philosophers, writers, teachers, travelers who will incorporate them into their own concepts of the mysteries of life, creating new breeds of spirituality, philosophy, psychology, theology, music and art which will inspire millions. Our ideas will be physically taken to the extremes of the earth, and metaphysically they will keep on echoing as endless vibrations of the spiritual energies enclosed within every word, thought or action.
After all it is quite true that “what we do now, echoes in eternity.” What an authentic statement that is indeed, even as the words quoted echo through my mind, onto the paper and onto your eyes and then mind as you read. Realize that there are no coincidences and you are where you are wherever you are and whenever you’re there because you actually need to be there – you, specifically! There is a purpose for every situation in your life. Don’t overthink, just let your intuition and goodness guide you and your divine purpose for the moment will reveal itself. Remove all mental blockages and let your true life flow – experience the connection of life.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
THE DANCE OF CONSTANT CHANGE
Don’t be fooled by the apparent stillness of things, or the apparent feeling of being stuck in a specific life situation. Everything eventually passes, nothing is static. Even the globe that we live on is constantly spinning around the scorching sun turning day to night and night back to day, yet we walk about and even sleep soundly without perceiving this unceasingly swift motion which is at work providing life for our planet and people, this background process bestowing us with blessings. Everything changes, and with every new breath life is renewed, and we celebrate the arrival of a new Now. Life, after all, is no more the present moment. Nothing exists for more than a mere moment. As Marcus Aurelius pointed out in ‘Meditations’, that classic book on life from the perspective of (mostly Stoic) philosophy, death robs us of nothing more than the present moment, since all past is mere memory, stored in the brain for practical purposes. I like to think of it as the way in which our progress gets stored in a memory card, allowing us to wake up every day and begin the game of life from where we left off. The future is even less real since what we call the future is in fact illusion, it is a vain hope, a longing for something we have never known, it is nothing that is real in the Now. According to Marcus, “in the life of a man, his time is but a moment, his being an incessant flux, his sense a dim rushlight.” We are only a point in the universe, a point where consciousness has met itself in divine awe and wonder in order to witness this time in history, to be present during this moment in awareness. The essential teaching is that reality is only Now, and when death comes for life it only robs its victim of one moment; it is the same for all who die, no matter whether one or one hundred years have passed in that lifetime, or whether another hundred years would have followed. They wouldn’t have followed anyway, since death always comes at its time, just like life does.
Even the most stable of things is constantly moving at the molecular level, rearranging itself in ways unimaginable to the mind and unseen by the naked eye. Nothing stays the same for more than a moment, just as every seven years we ourselves become completely new creatures, at least physically as our cells regenerate and we shed our skin like snakes. Death and life are one powerful and prominent example of the yin and yang, and they are forces to be reckoned and respected. All moments in life are special, and they all arrive at their time. The now is all that exists and we are experiencing it. Don’t let traumatic thoughts of past and future get to you or bring you down. Time is an illusion. If you don’t know what I mean by that then it’s likely you haven’t given much though to the Now and what it entails in its entirety, in its essence. All your past experiences, thoughts, feelings, ideas, all are now memories, and all have brought you to one reality, to the Now, to right Now. You are here for a reason, Now. What is that reason? Find out or it will find you. It may change depending on whether you set out to find it or not. If not, once fate finds you it might be a different one that it originally was. But that’s getting too far away from the topic. Tomorrow will never come, as tomorrow will also be “Now” when we experience it. The transitory nature of life is precisely what allows everything to be a tremendous treasure, as every moment is a whole new life, a whole new experience, a whole new lesson, a brand-new blessing. As the calendar counts, every day and week and month and year is a new chance to set a goal, to appreciate the power and the energy within, to be grateful for the fuel provided by failure, to begin paving the way towards a better day. This is the beauty of life amidst the apparently overwhelming conflict and chaos.
If everything that matters is the Now, and the Now always comes at its time, then that really redefines life in an extremely radical way, an exciting way. Finally, life can be lived with a deep sense of peace and wonder, a state of mind in which we see an opportunity in every obstacle, a clue in every challenge, leading up to our life purpose. Every situation we encounter can be embraced with a sense of gratitude, and self-realization can arise within a mindset which is determined to keep on learning constantly. Realize that change is the natural way of life, and everything changes no matter what we do, whether we like it or not. All we need to do as human beings is to ensure that we change positively, regardless of negative circumstances, – especially in negative circumstances! – something I like to term as mental or spiritual alchemy, respectively as we work with the mind and we administer with our spirit. This allows us to stop anticipating and longing for future events or painfully reviewing and regretting past failures. We can also stop dreading the future and resisting every type of change we are presented with, in the same way that we can now stop taking refuge in past glories in order to feed our damaged ego. We no longer need that, and what a relief it is to realize it. Once we perceive life as the amazing miracle which exists Now, we can stop procrastinating and start living life as if each second was our last, appreciating every act of kindness, every piece of advice, every strange coincidence, and every pure moment of joy without wasting half a second. If we live in the Now, then all that really matters is that we have what it takes to be happy Now, and we all have enough to be happy. We will be fine as long as we have what we need within ourselves, and I wholeheartedly believe all of us do.
We need to express our ideas without fear of ridicule and persecution, and live our lives evaluating every experience, emotion, thought or feeling, from a higher level of awareness, and allowing to flower only what our godly intuition deems fit for us. This does not give us an excuse to abuse others and forget about those who love us simply because we choose to ignore them and disappear into our own inner world of presence in which we function fully immersed in ourselves. Being fully immersed in and conscious of the Now involves being aware of all the blessings which have been granted to us individually, accepting and being grateful for them, but also acknowledging the fact that that the Now of other people who are alive is realer than the past in your memory, or the future in anyone’s imagination. We must feel who we are in the moment, as one with humanity, as a whole collective consciousness, as one people, regardless of differences, and be aware of why we are who we are. Feeling the deep bliss of being should fill us with joy and appreciation in everyday life, and an attitude of love towards anyone who has been involved in the miracle of our being. For example, let’s think of our parents. It is thanks to them that each and every one of us can even feel this deep sense of our being and appreciate it. The miracle of life is definitely something to be thankful for, as our parents give life to us and then grow old and we give life to their grandchildren. We see the change, over time, over generations – inevitable change. It is also thanks to any close siblings or great friends that a lot of us have received the proper encouragement we have needed along the way in order to carry on through difficult times, which have eventually led us up to today. Being aware of, and immersed in the now means acknowledging and expressing, truly experiencing the interconnectedness of life, not only on this planet, but in space, in the stars, in the sun and the moon, and even extending to the spiritual worlds and dimensions. You and I have the ability to be fully immersed in the present moment, whether it be filled with great pleasure or with great pain, and to accept it and transmute it into strength, by being thankful for it and digging deep for the lesson contained within. Digging deep consists of being in the Now. Even the great reformers of the past lived in the Now, and that is why their achievements have inspired millions of people up until today, thousands of years after their physical presence departed.
Once we are able to grasp this state of being which is always within ourselves, we will feel compelled to spread love and awareness to our loved ones and beyond, in order to free humanity from the chains of fear and anxiety which we have so willingly trapped ourselves in. The greatest of (inevitable) challenges can (and is meant to) be mentally re-framed by the mind and perceived in such a way that it motivates and inspires action. When I refer to action I refer to true action; action done without regard for the outcome, even action consecrated to God. This type of action is infused with a deep kind of concentration which ensures one’s consciousness, or real self, is fully experiencing the present moment and providing his or her full energy to it. It is what is referred to as Karma Yoga in the Hindu scriptures, and it involves taking full control over our minds, focusing on the present moment above all else, driven by a deep conviction that the Now is truly all that ever is to us. Even the Bible mentions working for God and offering your action as a sacrifice to the Most High, suggesting in Colossians 3:23: “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” Be fully immersed in the moment, in other words, walking in faith, trusting in eternal progress. Next time you are sitting at work, hating every second, watching the clock wishing it would speed up so you can leave, just remember this lesson, and try to accept the now and immerse yourself in it somehow. Find something to do. Take action! There is a reason why time seems to disappear when we are in meditation for a while, when we are enjoying a great evening with friends, when one embarks on a visionary trip, when one indulges in creative passion.
If you would like to read more regarding this philosophy about living in the Now, about the constant change of the universe, about the perfection and the plan of life, consider reading ‘The Power of Now’ by Eckhart Tolle, an awesome book which I will soon write a summary on, and ‘Meditations’ by Marcus Aurelius Antoninus.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”
~ Alan Watts
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
Every day is a good day. Every life is a good life. Every moment is goodness itself! Every day, life’s blessings are present from the moment we open our eyes in the morning until the moment we open them again the next day. There is simply no moment of our lives when we are not being blessed. As long as we are here then we are here for a purpose, and that is a major blessing and responsibility in itself. The freedom to think, to grow, to be aware, to love, to be loved, to create, to relate, to just be. We must learn to appreciate these wonders of life constantly, to remind ourselves of our blessings. Feel the blessings of life all around you, but most importantly recognize those blessings which are within you. What natural talents do you have? Are you a skilled athlete, a writer with a natural knack for words, a musician whose soul can vibe to any rhythm? These are only a few blessings we might receive, and they are tools meant to aid us in our specific life purpose, but we don’t need to be naturally talented at certain activities either in order to be blessed from birth. Do you feel kindness in your heart? Do you feel a desire to help others, do you feel joy when your friends achieve their goals, do you feel respect for humanity, for the innocence of childhood, for the intense sense of peace provided by pure positivity? Do you strive every day to become better, wiser, to make the world a better place? If we don’t, then we need to connect deeper with our spirit, because these blessings are definitely there, within us all. We just need to bring them to light. These are all blessings that, although invisible to our eyes, are completely real. In fact, they are much realer than any physical blessing we can possibly experience, be it an object, a pleasurable event, or the privilege of possessing a special skill. These inner blessings, such as love and compassion, respect and humility, are the ones that make up the core of our being, not as individuals, but as a whole collective consciousness. They show us that we are all intrinsically good in nature, and the same, naturally, goes for nature and life as a whole. Not only are we blessed with such a life, but we also have the power within ourselves to bless everyone and everything around us with our inner light.
There simply is no greater blessing than being a blessing to others. It is our main purpose as beings who share a common home, especially as human beings who share many other common factors as well. Spirituality is a conscious process which we engage in throughout our lives, a process of bringing the divine spirit within us to manifest outwardly into the world. We do this with the spirit itself, by tuning into its strength, allowing that strength to manifest itself in us, and using it to take hold of the mind in order to empty it of the trash we have filled it with. This allows us to tune into the strength of the spirit more easily and freely in the future. The spirit must train the mind to see the magic in the unfoldment of life, to appreciate even the greatest obstacles in its way, knowing they provide the greatest lessons if appreciated. Once this attitude towards life becomes the norm, then the mind can develop a pure personality, perfect for inspiring and uplifting others, blessing the world and ourselves in the process. Unfortunately, often times our mental attitudes are totally opposite to this. We complain about life’s challenges and we take pleasure and joy for granted until the fun stops abruptly and we find ourselves reminiscing, cursing at God, asking where the good days went. We refuse to acknowledge all the wonderful blessings we receive daily, choosing instead to focus and linger on one small event, or on various events or circumstances, which we have judged and termed as “bad”. Complaining, feeling sorry for oneself, the avoidance of all responsibility or effort then becomes a habit, it becomes our constant state of mind. We become worriers, complainers, completely miserable. If we wish to be happy, if we want the world to be happier, it is essential to train our minds to react in a much better way to the events of life. Whoever has mastered his or her mind allows life to flow, to teach what it needs to teach, using his or her own mistakes as the lesson material, as clear examples of behavior not to follow in the future. The wise student is grateful for the lesson learned, and never complains about the method used in teaching it, for truth is a tough but trusted friend to such a person.
When we are no longer afraid of truth, but instead we proactively seek truth, we can begin to feel and experience what it means to connect with the divine spirit within, the reflection of God in man. We can see Godliness, and goodness by extension, in everything we contemplate. Even if an event is not good in itself, perhaps its consequences will lead many people to deep reflection, which will place them on the path of righteousness. Everything is interconnected, and all of our mistakes are meant to mold us, they are part of the web of life, a part of the cosmic order, and are used for our own good as a species. We only need to see this, to realize the truth of this reality, and to allow our inner intuition to guide us. Even a person who is so immersed in the life of sense gratification can take a second to acknowledge the purely physical pleasure they feel from their sense perceptions during the moment of indulgence in a vicious vice. Even they can appreciate feeling good, doing something they enjoy, even though what they judge as good usually brings about much they will judge as bad, but it is only natural. Then, the bad that will come might lead a person to reflect and change, bringing them back to the good. Everything has a consequence, every cause an effect, everything has its time, everything changes perpetually. Although the example used is that of an addict of whatever it may be, if we investigate deeper into life and its meaning, and we use our intelligence, we will realize that God’s blessings for us inhabitants of this world are much bigger than petty pleasures or euphoric experiences of sense gratification. Take a moment to disconnect from your social life, from your busy routine. Breathe. Breathe consciously, feel the air fill up your lungs and acknowledge this invisible substance that provides you with life on this physical plane of existence. Let every breath flow, just meditate upon it, let it immerse you in being. Isn’t it crazy to think that if the air would suddenly disappear our bodies would die in a matter of seconds? We breathe unconsciously most of the time, without thinking about inhaling and exhaling each time, without being thankful for each individual breath, or each individual heartbeat. Such processes simply happen naturally, effortlessly, automatically, allowing us to keep on performing our daily tasks while we breathe calmly underneath it all.
But do we really breathe, if breathing is not a process brought about by our mind? If we are not consciously thinking about breathing, then can we say any of us are really engaged in the action of breathing? Wouldn’t it be interesting to think that maybe it is actually the universe which is breathing us, or at least making us breathe? Isn’t some background process going on at all times, ensuring that all humans receive air without us having to think about breathing? Does the source of the breathing process also cause all of our hearts to beat, without our command, non-stop for the total duration of our lives on Earth? These automatic processes are actually brought about by the common spirit which inhabits us all, which clothes itself in earthly garments of all forms, human and otherwise, as well as manifesting itself gloriously in the stars, in the planets and in any other life forms in the universe, in order to carry out its own blessings onto all other parts of itself, or its creation. Could we not say that we are only parts of the process of life, of the world, of the universe, of history? We truly are at God’s mercy, which is felt in every blessing, whether we are ready to label it a blessing or not. Realizing this truth, we will automatically begin to feel what it’s like to live driven by the voice of intuition within, by the laws of morality, by what we all know to be right, although some pretend not to know. We find that living in such a way allows us to be of use to others in the most efficient way we can, and this fills us with true joy. We must not allow distractions to lead us astray. Distractions will twist our vision and ideas on life. They do not allow you to see the blessing lying dormant in every obstacle, in every life experience. Be decisive, don’t spend countless hours going back and forth between one choice or the other. Don’t worry about it. Make the choice your intuition tells you is right, and trust that blessings will be the outcome, as nothing else can come of anything. Learn to truly appreciate life!
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.”
~ Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
DO WHAT’S RIGHT FOR OUR PLANET
Serenity and peace of mind are things which are so sacred and much needed in our sick society. The song “Such a Rush” by Coldplay always reminds me of the sad yet comical way in which we all rush to our respective work places and meetings and appointments, all trying to get ahead, rushing to the bus, driving aggressively to make sure we don’t get cut off, trying to make a dollar or two more every hour. Deep inside, do we not all realize that there is something much more important and real and worthy of our attention than all this?
The stressful, ambitious, greedy lifestyle which the majority of us are living today is harming not only us physically and psychologically, but our materialism and mass consumerism is also affecting peaceful creatures who have nothing to do and have never participated, and never would participate if they were able to, with our current system of life. Our current system of life endangers these creatures by polluting their environments. By creating a ruin of their home. By killing many of them with toxic chemicals and other contaminants which are dumped into the ocean on a daily basis.
We take great pride in ourselves for being the most advanced, the most intellectual, the most active and innovative and civilized species on planet Earth; and yet, we let our corruption eat us alive inside, because at the end of the day, we can never be truly satisfied with our gains, knowing we have caused others much suffering and torment in the process of accumulating said wealth. Oh, if we only knew how rich we truly are within. If we could only remember, our innermost purity, the divine spark which began it all, if we could only remember before our birth, before the beginning of time, we could experience what now we can only faintly feel within ourselves: the bright light of intuition.
If we strive to always do the right thing, then our conscience cannot haunt us, and we shall have peace of mind. We must always seek to learn from all creatures. Many animals can be examples to us. Animals are not so ambitious as humans, and they are for the most part content with just being, and of course, fulfilling their basic needs for survival and reproduction. Animals do not complicate life for themselves with drama and hatred, with grudges and scorn. In conclusion, I guess my message is: Stop to think while you are at work, while on the bus, while at home, wherever you are. Always do what is right. Never sacrifice your integrity for anything, because not only yours, but the well-being of the entire planet depends on it.
Forget your stress and look at life through the eyes of consciousness, through the mind of God. Realize that while you stress, someone else smiles, and feels some relief at last. As you stress about a million things, remember to keep it cool and keep control of yourself, so as not to harm other beautiful sentient beings who are just living their lives, playing their part in the cosmic unfolding of the universe.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“What I dream of is an art of balance, of purity and serenity devoid of troubling or depressing subject matter – a soothing, calming influence on the mind, rather like a good armchair which provides relaxation from physical fatigue.
~ Henri Matisse (1869-1954)
SPIRIT & BODY
The body is a tool which we use to experience life on this physical plane. As many of us become immersed in the happenings of everyday life, the years take their toll, and we are left with amnesia, we cannot remember why we came here, to be in this body, in the first place. This is the cause of much human confusion. We believe we are our bodies, and it is hard for us to think of any scenario in which we are separated from our bodies, it just seems like an overwhelming concept to comprehend.
The fact is that we always leave our bodies in much the same way we remove our clothes at the end of the day. It is believed that we leave our bodies during sleep. This could also be going on during meditation, or during intense psychedelic experiences. We definitely leave our bodies as we are astral projecting. Apart from all this, we are actually not even exclusively in our bodies. We are at the same time taking part in the happenings of the spiritual realm. Just because we do not see what is going on, does not mean that there is nothing going on.
If we begin to pay closer attention to what is going on behind the scenes of our lives, we can start to realize that there is a vast space of awareness, a magnificent field of wonder yet to be explored by us. It is within us and without us, it is invisible to the naked eye and yet it is realer than any physical object. It is to this magical substance that we owe our breath, our consciousness, our whole awareness of life, our will-power, our self-control. This is a divine gift from God, one without which we could not exist in the first place. All that we are is energy, manifesting itself because God is unstoppable, and must create life.
What we must do, what our main task should be, is that of connecting with our spirit on a deeper level, so as not to be affected so strongly by the circumstances of the physical body, and so that we may live our lives according to the divine spirit. This way, we will feel prepared to stand up for justice, to speak our minds, to revolutionize the world with our noble ideas, without fear of physical harm, of persecution or death. How can we fear such things if they are the natural consequences of doing what we know is right? Not even physical death can stop the progress we make in spirit. Don’t give up the fight!
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
SHINE YOUR LIGHT
Don’t follow negative trends, instead spread positive new ideas. You never know the amazing ways in which life can unfold when you take action. I believe there is an underlying magic behind all seemingly commonplace events of life. Every sunrise and sunset brings about such tremendous beauty, and when there are no clouds in sight we can see and feel the magnificent sunshine pouring over all that exists, illuminating the green leaves, transforming them into a radiant, bright shade of yellow. The magic is all around us, in nature and also in the genius of human invention, wisdom and innovation.
There have been many throughout history, as there are today, who have tried to capture the essence of this divine magic which permeates all creation. There is hardly any magic more captivating than that of love, of poetry, of music, of feeling free, true freedom, of breaking free of the chains of monotonous existence. We walk around bored, at home, in the streets, at work, complaining about our jobs like our coworkers just because it’s what everyone else loves to talk about casually in order to feel better and help the time pass by. I guess we feel better if others feel miserable too, just as long as we’re not alone in our misery. The liberating truth is that we don’t need to feel like this at all! Every moment, every event, the smallest, most random event has its significance, its purpose for being, just as we all do.
We don’t even know why we exist, we don’t know who created us, we believe in religions and ideologies but we don’t really know the truth, and yet we never bother to investigate! We aren’t the least bit interested in learning about our roots, learning about history and about life, about the world and the universe and all that is. The most terrible tragedy of all is that we never bother to learn about ourselves, the real Self, the spirit within, and the amazing Power which it emanates from, God, the source of all life. We neglect the infinite power within ourselves, the power to promote positive change, which is our purpose on this planet. We were not born simply to selfishly fulfill our desires without a care one time after another as we slowly decay and eventually die.
No, we were born, each person in his or her specific life and family, in order to live, to learn lessons, to teach lessons, through our words and actions, to learn of the goodness within us, to extend that goodness throughout our life journey, to all we encounter. To lend a helping hand, a word of encouragement, a word of wise advice, to be an attentive friend who can listen to another’s concerns with empathy, to care for our brothers and sisters and fathers and mothers, to care for ourselves and our neighbors as well. Deep inside, even the most hardened criminal among us knows that these are noble values, and are the things that should be pursued. If he does not acknowledge this, at least he knows that these are values which the human race needs in order to progress, and to avoid extinction. The more we ignore our fellow brothers and sisters, the more we follow negative trends, the more we divide ourselves into little groups and we treat outsiders with contempt, the more we refuse to think for ourselves and act based on what is right and true, the more problems we will all experience, and becoming more and more problematic on a daily basis, life and the world in which we live will slowly decay and will eventually die, perhaps in the time of our not-so-distant descendants, just as the human body slowly completes the dying process, decaying sooner or later depending on the circumstances inflicted upon it by he or she who inhabits it.
With that being said, let us take care of ourselves in a healthy manner, making sure the bodies we have been entrusted with are well fed and are provided with the necessary energy to aid us in our adventure here on Earth. Let us also take care of our families and friends, and of any who need taking care of and who we are in a position to help. Let us analyze our lifestyle and the things we do on a daily basis, let us constantly observe for routines which can be altered in order to improve ourselves, let us be constantly alert for new projects we can undertake, for new ways to grasp the magic within and express it outwardly, for new ways to contribute to the healing and the building up of society and the world, even the universe. If we can cultivate the necessary discipline to apply this extreme mindfulness to each moment of our lives, and if we can develop the strength of character needed to always do the right thing when we realize it, then we can move our lives in a direction which will fill us with positivity and peace, and we will be overtaken by a deep sense of love and care for all that is.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
NO MAN CAN SERVE TWO MASTERS
Unfortunately, too many people become accustomed to making decisions purely based on financial gain, failing to realize that what matters most when they pass away won’t be how much money they left in the bank, but the legacy they left, the way they influenced those around them as well as their environment, family and friends. Definitely keep on getting paid, but put some thought into the deeper things in life. After all, it is man who has the power to make money.. but money can never make you a man. Money can never make you a satisfied woman either, so don’t fall for society’s trap of marginalizing women and forcing them to feel dependent on men for financial stability and a comfortable life. Each individual has inside the divine spark of infinite spirit, and this spirit suffers when we reduce our life purpose to a competition, a misguided ambition to accumulate wealth and possessions.
I love the story of the Buddha, the prince who, without hesitating, left his palace and all the benefits the royal life included, in order to travel the land, to be amongst the people, to share in their lives in an attempt to understand and alleviate their suffering, all human suffering. Such a decision could only be driven by the purest sense of compassion, which we are all able to achieve. Although I’m not suggesting we go to such an extreme as to leave our home and all our material possessions behind, the fact is that currently most of the population of planet Earth is living on the opposite pole, on the other extreme. We pass by homeless people in the streets, in developed nations such as Canada and the United States, and we don’t dare to look in their eyes. The shame would consume us, we would have to bear another person’s pain for one mere moment, and that in itself would be so undesirable to us that we glance away, or walk with our look fixed straight ahead, or we look at the floor.
We know there is much to change in this world, but we don’t know how it can change. We expect others to change it, and decide to ignore the uncomfortable truths of life, until we become desensitized to them. Many people have been emotionally hurt, and being unable to forgive, they decide, consciously or unconsciously, to shut themselves down emotionally, at least to other people. They don’t want to be taken advantage of ever again, so they don’t show any emotion, in order not to seem vulnerable, like easy prey. If forgiveness and love cannot be applied to such a situation, a very hostile and negative attitude will eventually develop towards other people. Once this attitude becomes habit, the affected person will be willing to do anything harmful to another being, if it leads to his or her own gain and satisfaction. As they affect others who feel betrayed and unfairly treated by life, many of their victims choose to take the same path of selfishness and emotional non-availability. The cycle continues forever, creating a worldwide web of insensitivity, violence and chaos. It is evident to us that things should not be this way at all.
Caring about others’ emotions and suffering is a natural part of the divine spark of God’s light which shines with integrity from us when we choose to follow it. However, when we choose to ignore our better judgement, declining life’s invitations to partake in charity, or in a simple act of kindness because it slightly intervenes with out planned routine or with our financial gain, we slowly lose our ability to hear the pure voice of intuition within us. This also happens whenever we choose material gain over acting with integrity, committing actions which will devastate others such as financial fraud or robbery, or murder in the hitman’s case. This voice is dumbed down by greedy and hostile thoughts of power, power which is needed due to a lack of life purpose, and perhaps low self-esteem. How can this power be achieved? The natural inclination of the human being is to turn to money in an attempt to reach the much desired power.
Sometimes wealth is gained honestly but in an unbalanced fashion. In such a case, the individual commits all his time, perhaps all his mental energy and life focus, and projects it onto his work, in order to make as much money as possible, to earn the highest commission, to rejoice at the next promotion, to shine bright above all his coworkers. This will eventually lead to a more luxurious, expensive lifestyle which will, in the person’s mind, grant them the happiness and joy they so hopelessly long for for so long. Others resort to illegal and immortal activities to achieve their goal of generating mass amounts of wealth. Hitmen happily accept high amounts of money for their service, which is actually a form of playing God and deciding they have the right to take another human life, since money is involved, and that is more important. Thieves steal from empty homes, or mug solitary people on the street, sometimes shooting or stabbing them for the sake of taking their wallet or phone. Politicians launder insane amounts of money to ensure they remain in power, to watch out for their interests, easily ignoring the crying and shouting voices of the dissatisfied, disappointed, angry and often times hungry nation which has been placed under their control.
This issue sadly affects much of the third world, having been a problem various times in my native country of Honduras, and currently devastating Venezuela. We scream and shout and rage and protest, but yet we choose these politicians to rule over us. We fight amongst ourselves and nurture vicious hatred in our hearts, for others who share different opinions than us or support different political parties. We act as if God has come to reign, and we must support him, we absolutely need our preferred candidate to come into power since they will work their magic and fix all the problems of an impoverished country, or further advance a developed nation generating more jobs and money for its citizens. If this is not accomplished during the duration of their term, we protest because nothing has changed. The problem is us, and we must realize it. We must initiate change in the way we act, instead of waiting for other to do so. We are basically funding the campaigns of these people who don’t give a damn about anything but their own financial and political affairs. We are promised tax cuts, benefits, higher wages, and time and time again we believe one fool after another, as if some magical man will step onto the scene and have all the solutions to our problems. We hold on to hope only to find we have been deceived once again.
That being said, we simply cannot blame politicians for their corruption, we must look at ourselves. If you would find a wallet on the street with an ID or a phone number to call, and you decide to keep it rather than return it because there is money inside, perhaps a quite enticing amount of money, then you must face the fact that you are just as corrupt as any politician you hate, since you decided to make the wrong decision at the expense of someone else’s well-being in a moment when you were not being watched. If we act in such a way, how can we blame politicians from stealing much greater amounts of money from us after we deliberately put them in a position in which they can easily steal and scam without being supervised and investigated.
We must stop putting people in power to rule over us, or allowing money to rule over us; we must realize that God is the sole authority of the universe, and God’s goodness, his greatness, is written in our spirit, a direct emanation of God’s divinity. All we need to do is listen to the voice of the spirit within us, to pray, to meditate, to feel what we know is right, and to act in a right manner. We can only eliminate poverty and corruption in this world when all of us decide to practice righteous living, in every aspect of life, including financially, since all our acts of corruption, however small, amount up and eventually corrupt the collective consciousness of our planet, something which obviously affects all of its inhabitants in a very negative way.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”
~ Matthew 6:24
THE THREE-FOLD NATURE OF MAN
We are all familiar with the famous cartoon depicting an indecisive human being, receiving advice from both an angel with a shining halo on one side, and a horned little devil with a pitchfork on the other. Since a very young age it is clear to us that we simply cannot escape either side of our instinctive nature. We, as spiritual entities entrusted with a body and a brain at birth, embody three different energies which reflect each of our natures – the earthly, the mental and the spiritual. Our physical nature is the nature of the body, while our spiritual nature is that of the spirit. Our mental nature is the energy that connects those two, as spiritual reality is perceived by physical mind and transformed into the mental activity which we assume is an accurate representation of all that exists. In most situations, we really do have to “see it to believe it”, but if we continue following this motto and applying it indiscriminately to every aspect of our lives, we will surely never see the truth of things, since the fact is that the things we cannot see are actually the realest of all things. Consider the amazing fact that we do not physically see even a minuscule fraction of the process that takes place behind the scenes before we are presented with this limited version of reality which we experience and call daily life. Reality goes through stages of filtration before it is available to our sense perceptions. We all know that there can be tremendous consequences if a person’s brain is somehow injured or damaged in any way, whether by force or by a chemical imbalance, or whatever the problem may be; the fact is that a damaged brain cannot perceive reality in the same way as an undamaged brain. However, the fact that two versions of reality are not the same, does not necessarily mean that either of them is exclusively real. Does a schizophrenic, for example, perceive a reality any less real than us in his mind, during the moment when he is fully immersed in his “hallucinations”? Can we differentiate between reality and sleep while we are having a vivid dream or nightmare? Do we not run for our precious lives in a nightmare in much the same way we would in a similar real-life situation? These scenarios bring us face-to-face with the powerful realization of just how fragile and limited our so-called “reality” really is. Limited, however, does not necessarily mean flawed, as this is the way in which we were created by God, and I’m sure many of us believe, in some way or another, that things happen for a reason, as opposed to being merely random happenings.
My personal belief is that we were given a mind as a filtering mechanism so that we can function on a physical level, since it is evident that states of deep meditation and insight, or psychedelic states, are not of much use to us while we are attempting to engage in anything which requires conscious use of our sense perceptions. Meditative states of being are useful to us only when we are in a contemplative state, divinely inspired and willing to empty the mind and to silence the emotions and desires of the flesh, in order to allow God’s divine wisdom to shine through and manifest itself. A perfect example is that of the psychedelic experience, which allows us to view reality from a much broader perspective, a more spiritual perspective, so to speak. This state of being can be embraced and used as a tool to reach some of the most mind-blowing revelations and ideas within our grasp, as I myself can attest to. Many of my most recent psychedelic trips have been some of the most powerful and inspiring experiences of my life, and I can honestly say I would not be as motivated as I am in the project of pursuing my goals of righteous living if it had not been for those experiences. However, I have also witnessed peers experience horrible, hellish trips while on psychedelics as a result of not being able to let go of mental social constructs, to let the experience simply flow. This usually happens when someone decides it’s a great idea to take a high dose of a psychedelic drug at a party or a nightclub, completely ignorant to the fact that he is surrounded by unfamiliar faces and loud noises, by people with possible ulterior motives and materialistic views of life. These unfortunate reactions are simply results of people being unwilling to part with their minds, and to enter the realm of spirit, choosing to use a powerful spiritual substance in an attempt at fulfilling physical or mental desires. Experimenting with one’s consciousness is serious business and is an art which demands respect, for it requires dissociating from the mind, and associating once again with the natural spirit of all things. This is sacred and must always be practiced in an environment which encourages peace, calm, self-inquiry, and open communion if meditation or study is done amongst a group. The value of such tools as entheogens is too often shamefully wasted on mundane conversations and ideas which simply do not do the experience justice. This, unfortunately, does not prevent those who are still ignorant to the spiritual properties of these plants, or who have no intention of showing respect for nature, or for natural, ancient culture and wisdom, from abusing them. Nowadays, many play the part of philosophers, yogis, psychonauts and free thinkers, but are unwilling to let go of the destructive behavior patterns and selfish ambitions which drive them, and are deluded by their minds into a false sense of spirituality.
The fact is that true meditation, whether it is done in the form of sitting and focusing, the practicing of breathing exercises, any kind of fasting, or through a psychedelic experience, requires us to consciously focus our attention upon our spiritual nature, gradually as we become less aware of, and concerned with, our bodies, thoughts, emotions and senses, and instead more aware of a feeling of deep bliss and intuition. This bliss I mention is not to be thought of as a drug-induced, jittery euphoria, as is produced by stimulant drugs which are mainly manufactured in order to be used as mood enhancers. Rather, it is a warm feeling of relaxation associated with the pure pleasure of simply being, of awareness existing separately from the mind’s distracting noise. When we come closer to the great spiritual nature within and without us, such deep bliss is inevitable, as the spirit is the energy which emanates directly from God, a reflection and representation of all that is godly and pure; the microcosm reflecting the macrocosm. Even through the many harsh obstacles of life, even when presented with images of the atrocities which are committed around the world and which take place on a daily basis, someone who can see beyond the veil of illusion is not weighed down by the sufferings associated with international burdens, for he realizes both the fact that all suffering is brought upon us by ourselves as collective humanity, and the fact that the worst of challenges have always been, and will continue being, some of the most profound sources of inspiration and motivation for courageous spirits who, throughout the ages, have been and will continue to be brave enough to defy the status quo of society, taking on the task of self-discovery, the path taught to us by such great teachers as Jesus and the Buddha, the task presented by the Yoga Sutras which leads to Samadhi, the perfect Kabbalistic balancing of the Desire to Receive and the Desire to Share, to love and accept oneself, and to love all others as oneself, seeing past the illusions of physical or mental differences, or dualistic concepts. One who takes on such an honorable task quickly realizes that there is no space for hate, for anger, for sorrow, for worry, in his consciousness, for these things too shall pass, as everything material is impermanent. Every motion that takes place in every world, every leaf that falls, every drop of rain that descends upon our earth, is a sign of the constant balancing out of the universal Law of Polarity, or yin and yang energies, circling like an endless ring. A person who is divinely blessed with even a glimpse of this divine reality (wisdom), really experiencing that moment to the point that it changes his consciousness and inspires him to become better, can come back from such a divine state, and incorporate its profound wisdom into his spirit, reflecting it onto mundane, everyday, physical reality, creating the change he wishes to see, and improving the overall living energy of the universe everywhere he might go, so long as he possesses the necessary understanding to do so, which is usually the case if such a mystical sate has been experienced.
Many ancient mystics regarded the nature of the spirit to be further divided into three parts, representing the Holy Trinity within man, which can be symbolized by the three highest sephiroth on the Tree of Life: Kether (the Crown), or the supreme, unfathomable aspect of God’s Light, as it emanates from God himself; Chokmah (Wisdom), representative of the universal spirit we are referring to, and which is the reflection of God’s energy which gives life to all and encompasses all wisdom in all things; and Binah (Understanding), which allows us to put divine Wisdom to action. This three-fold spirit of divine light is within us at all times, and we increase or decrease our awareness of it depending on how much we exercise listening to it and following it. The process of ascending up the sephiroth can be seen as elevating our awareness above the lower natures (physical and mental) within ourselves, and becoming fixated on the spiritual reality and oneness of all. In Western civilization, the spirit is faintly recognized as intuition, but intuition becomes weaker and weaker as it is constantly ignored and discarded. Even an atheist can recognize intuition as something coming from beyond the mind, as expressed in the words of Paracelsus, “There is an Eternal Sun, which is the source of all wisdom, and those whose spiritual senses have awakened to life will see that sun and be conscious of His existence; but those who have not attained spiritual consciousness may yet feel His power by an inner faculty which is called Intuition.” This spirit of wisdom is within everyone and everything, so it is not exclusively inside of us individually. Rather, it is us; all of us. Each physical body and brain we interact with is actually another manifestation, or incarnation, of the universal spirit, just as the cells and organs within our body all work together towards the perfect, harmonious completion of the whole. Intuition is the feeling inside of ourselves that makes us feel that something is morally right or wrong. This can sometimes be the case even without knowing why what we are doing is right or wrong, but just having a deep feeling of conviction that it is. The spirit knows. The spirit, which is our true self, separate from our earthly nature, comes from a dimension of all that is good and true, and is itself an extension or emanation of the divine light which is the source of all that is, if worded in a Kabbalistic sense. As an extension of all the light which pervades all consciousness, the spirit comes from God, the divine authority which we cannot possibly begin to label or understand through vocabulary, and therefore has the qualities of purity and holiness which are evident in anything that emanates from the Creator himself.
Mental energy is the energy of the brain, which as mentioned earlier, filters spiritual reality and allows us to perceive the world in a simplified, logical manner, applying labels and categories to all ideas and experiences, creating concepts to prevent us from becoming confused, or from being presented with visions and ideas which we are not prepared to experience, and which might cause us to become overwhelmed. Mind does not produce ideas or visions, but rather presents us with a minuscule glimpse, or compressed version, of the vast ocean of ideas and visions which exist beyond the physical realm. Therefore, thought is not a production of ideas, merely a process of grasping already existing ideas, as also stated by Paracelsus, or expressed by the famous phrase “No idea is original under the sun.” Just as the eyes, which are physical organs, process the physical appearance of all things, and our ears aid us in the processing of the sound of all things, so does the brain, which is also a physical organ, process all ideas which exist in the realm of spirit, and present them to us as thoughts. The body is the third and most physical nature within man. The body has its needs, and these are survival instincts built into us so that we may have the means to keep on living. The body feels hungry so that we will eat and be filled with energy, to work, to eat, to have sex. Sexual desire is felt in the body so that we may feel compelled to make love and procreate, ensuring our bloodline and family name will live on through our children. Although the cravings of the body are experienced physically, they actually arise from our brain, which sends a signal to the body so that it will act and satisfy the mental urge. These cravings can be observed in animals as well as humans, and are common to most species of animals. The body therefore represents man’s animal nature, his lowest nature, which must be dominated by his mental nature, which in turn must be dominated by his spiritual nature in order to produce truly positive results in this life. It can also be described as man’s Luciferian nature being overcome by his Christ consciousness, as described in Masonic terms. The brain connects the rest of the body to the nervous system, and although it is technically part of the body, it is considered a separate nature in man since no other body part is capable of thought. We might say that the body is the tool of the brain, as the brain is the tool of the spirit. To dominate the former two with the latter is the ideal situation.
The spirit, which is intuition, and which is guided by the essence of God which is ever-present in us exists, as I mentioned, in a higher dimension, a dimension of pure wisdom and truth. The problem is that we ignore our intuition, and over time we forget to trust or even listen to our spirit at all. Society is constantly at work to indoctrinate us, filling us up with ideologies and categorizing us into labels, to belittle us and minimize us in order to fit us into little boxes, and many of us have succumbed and become so identified with certain groups and identities, willing to fight to the death for these ideas and movements, that we end up putting abstract concepts over actual lives, friendships and relationships. We have become completely blinded to the fact that, despite all these names, labels and movements we associate ourselves with to differentiate ourselves from each other, we are all essentially composed of the same creative energy, the same extension of God’s divine light. This means that if we learn to see beyond the mental patterns and ideas we have become so submerged in, we shall then become able to experience a deep sense of equality or oneness with all that exists. We are all a manifestation of the universe, a manifestation of God’s creative energy shining on the canvas of creation. Everything is in constant motion, vibrating and becoming at each second something different than it was the second before. This is due to the fact that Divine energy cannot be stopped. This divine energy is referred to as prana in the Hindu religion, and in Kabbalah as the divine light, which is the energy emanated by God, which then passes through various levels of emanation by means of the ten sephiroth of the Tree of Life, creating different dimensions or worlds, each operating at a different energy level, both within the physical universe, as well as within the spiritual and physical body of man.
When an individual realizes that this divine, universal spirit which is also within us grows stronger the more we practice trusting it, sacrificing our selfish desires for a greater cause, being examples of integrity and righteousness, of wisdom and understanding, he or she should feel absolutely compelled to follow it if he is truly wise, for he will remember the ancient truth once forgotten, that the path of the spirit is not to be followed based upon any promised reward, but instead it is something which is to be embraced out of a feeling of being called to embark on a mission, on a journey back to our divine roots. A wise alchemist acknowledges that a spiritual life will not be easy, and it might in fact bring about ridicule and misfortune. For this reason, if we are serious about living life righteously, according to the Holy spirit within us, we must have something to keep us motivated at all times. We must be willing to make sacrifices if we are ready to embark on this alchemical journey. This is a personal, psychological and spiritual journey which takes us on a lifelong mission to transmute all the negativity inside of ourselves, every challenge and every disadvantage, every weakness and every insecurity, into a deeper source of strength which fuels our every cell to work diligently toward our various goals. Our main goal as a species as well as individually, which is that of constant self-realization, is ultimately compromised of all the productive goals we set out to complete, so do not be overwhelmed by the magnitude of the task at hand. It is crucial to embrace every challenge and every adversity as it comes, for there can be no gain without pain, just as positivity cannot exists without negativity, or light without darkness, and vice-versa. In Matthew 6:34, we are taught to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Today has enough trouble of its own.” This truth, that tomorrow will worry about itself, was acknowledged by the ancients and can best be explained by the Hermetic Principle of Correspondence. Everything happens for a specific reason; every cause has one or more effects, and every effect has one or more causes, but everything happens as it is supposed to, as indicated by the universal Principle of Cause and Effect. the Principle of Polarity states that opposites meet in degree, and everything balances out in divine perfection. One who understands this truth, and constantly meditates upon it in order to analyze it from every possible perspective, begins to understand that there is no need to resist the dance of life, the constant changes which create the flow of our world and the entire universe, just as we have no desire to resist the changes of the seasons during their respective times of the year. Energy moves back and forth, in and out, here and there, balancing itself out, but never ceasing to exist in essence. As goes the famous statement by the great philosopher Alan Watts, “the only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” Every experience is to be fully embraced and its essence extracted, in order to be used in the process of the alchemical transmutation of the spirit, refining material existence into a golden monument representative of the divine essence of the Great Creator, the First Cause.
The Kabbalah teaches us that our physical world is a result of a contraction of the Divine energy which once was completely present in everything. All that had been created in the beginning, in the void, or the nothingness, was a reflection of all that was the Creator. This means that as the Creator was the positive, all-imparting, uncreated energy, the energy of creation was the negative, so to speak, all-receiving, created energy. This receiving energy was continually filled by the divine light of God, and lacked nothing. However, through what Kabbalists believe is the true secret contained within the Genesis account of the Fall of Man, the Universal, receiving energy (symbolized as Adam), being subject to the law of correspondence, felt a desire to create (tempted by the serpent), or to impart instead of being satisfied by merely receiving (a concept known Kabbalistically as bread of shame), and was therefore deprived of most of the divine, all-giving energy of God, and expelled from the Garden of Eden, into the sephirah of Malkhut, which contains the least amount of divine energy, being lower than the higher dimensions above it. The purpose of this contraction of divine energy was so that the receiving energy would have a chance to impart as well, but on a smaller scale, and to receive as it imparts, gradually connecting more and more with the original all-giving energy of God which once fulfilled its every need. Lacking the all-giving, pure energy of the Creator, this all-receiving energy was separated into physical bodies, and left with all kinds of unfulfilled desires which were previously constantly fulfilled by the divine light. This state of physicality, being almost completely separate from God’s divine light is the state of existence within the sephirah Malkhut, our physical world. Even in the realm of Malkhut, however, we still possess a fraction of God’s divine energy within us, known as intuition, which can serve to guide us back to God if we practice paying attention to it. It has the ability to elevate us above our desires, and above all forms of suffering, for as, according to the Buddha’s philosophy of the four noble truths, desire and attachment are the causes of all suffering. Studying the Kabbalah, we also learn that God’s divine Light undergoes a process of gradual emanation, and passes through ten sephiroth (plural), until reaching Malkhut, the sephirah (singular) which represents our physical existence. If we were to go up from Malkhut, ascending through the higher sephiroth, we would notice that each higher plane is less physical than the lower, and embodies within it the next, lower level in potential form, just as a seed holds within it the potential for growth into the tallest of trees, and just as a mind contains the idea of a building before the blueprint is finished and long before the building is finalized or even started. As we ascend we see that with each higher dimension, we come closer to the pure divine Light; we gradually let go of material existence, as we venture into the realm of our thoughts, then our emotions, and then to our willpower, or self-control.
Willpower is represented by the sephiroth of Tiphereth, or beauty, so it is at this point that we begin to see the beauty in every aspect of life. Willpower allows us to transcend pain or pleasure, and the flaws or character which arise from too much of either, by allowing us to see how every experience, whether painful or pleasing, brings about its own lesson, and its own learning and growing opprtunity. When we reach the level of willpower, we are on the edge of enlightenment, as Tiphereth is the sephirah which follows Geburah and Chesed (Justice and Mercy, respectively), the direct recepients of the energy which emanates from the Holy Trinity, namely Kether, Chokmah and Binah (Crown, Wisdom and Understanding), the three-fold nature of the human Spirit. These ten sephiroth are not only used to represent the grades of physicality of dimensions of non-spiritual existence, but also the different levels of human consciousness. The three highest sephiroth represent man’s three-fold spirit, while the seven lower sephiroth represent man’s mental, and physical natures, dealing with thoughts, emotions, and physical matter. A wise person, knowing the truth behind the matter of pain and pleasure, and of overall duality, can be content in knowing that nothing lasts, and everything is impermanent. Energy keeps on transforming itself, moving and vibrating, creating and destroying, and nothing remains the same. Recognizing the impermanence of such things, a wise person decides to follow the true inner peace of the divine spirit within him, neither rejoicing in times of victory, nor sulking in times of misery. A person who is identified with their true divine self, the divine nature that operates inside and through their physical body, cannot be ecstatic about worldly gains, and losing such gains cannot take his happiness away either, for his treasure is in the heavenly planes. A master of the spiritual art will not weep in times of illness, due to sorrow, for he knows that the true self, the spirit, is eternal and cannot be harmed by disease or even death, only strengthened through the discipline which can be built by the necessary mental strength to endure a devastating illness. We must all strive to become as wise as we can, for one cannot possibly acquire enough wisdom in one lifetime, even if every second is spent searching. Life is just too meaningful.
One way to keep motivated on the path of constant self-realization and mastery of the spirit and mind is to practice what is referred to as Karma Yoga in the Bhagavad Gita; simply put, consecrating your every act to the Creator, therefore transforming every secular or mundane act into a sacrifice to the divine. Such a philosophy and way of living frees men from the bondage of labor, since by adopting this way of being one ceases to be attached to the fruits of labor, and begins to see even the most tedious task in a brand new light, as a manifestation of his thanksgiving for the amazing powers to live and to breathe which have been so graciously bestowed upon us all. How do we sacrifice and offer our actions to God? We do this by being fully present in every moment as our real Self, the divine spirit which emanates from the light of the Creator, the Self that we feel inside, the Atman which reflects and emanates from the Brahman, the voice of conscience that knows, recognizing and advising us regarding what is right and what is wrong. The spirit, recognizing its own true essence of divinity, is fully conscious of its origin, that it came from an omnipresent, all-powerful supreme God. This realization is humbling and simply awe-inspiring, and should prevent a person who has mastered his lower nature from complaining about any situation, recognizing divinity and balance in every aspect of life. Often times, unfortunately, this feeling of intuition, which is actually the spirit, the true Self, is dumbed down by incessant thinking, as we forget about our Spiritual nature and only pay attention to, and identify with, the mind’s activity. Let us, therefore, carefully examine ourselves; our thoughts, our emotions, our moves, our motives, our likes, our dislikes. Let us evaluate them honestly and carefully, to the most minute detail, as a scientist looking through a microscope, so that we may find out which of these things truly serve us, and which only serve to bring us down. Which are manifestations of the divine spirit in us, and which are products of following social norms which we know are incorrect? If we all make it a habit to take a moment to reflect in such a way on a daily basis, it would mean the beginning of mankind’s journey to higher levels of collective consciousness, and an overall more fulfilling state of existence.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
WHERE DO IDEAS COME FROM?
Even the most amazing ideas, which seem to come to us as random glimpses of insight, suddenly illuminating our Spirits in a flash as if we were remembering some deep truth once forgotten, gradually lose their brilliance with every thought that comes to mind after them, eventually being forgotten altogether once again. I find great truth in the following statement by Paracelsus, who believed that “all knowledge comes from the stars (the Universal Mind). Men do not invent or create ideas; the ideas exist and men are able to grasp them.” I take this to mean that ideas are not opinions at all, but are actually facts. Real ideas are truths regarding God and the laws which dictate the entire universe. These ideas reside in the realm of pure wisdom, the realm of Spirit, which is above the carnal mind. Paracelsus refers to this Spirit as “The Universal Mind”, comparable to the Spirit which I often speak of, which is the emanation and reflection of God’s being dwelling inside of us. Ideas are therefore truths, whether we grasp them or not, and we all grasp each universal truth according to our own level of consciousness, depending on how in tune we are with the realm of pure wisdom, and with our spiritual nature.
The nature of the Divine Spirit within us is pure and righteous in every sense of the word. In Hinduism, it is our true Self, the Atman in each of us which reflects the complete all-pervading Brahman; and in Kabbalistic terms, it is the Divine Light in us which emanates from the Ein Sof, through the sefiroth of the Tree of Life. An incredible amount of cultures and belief systems have different terms for these very similar concepts, which is further truth of the relevance of Paracelsus’ statement, that all ideas exist as universal truths, and that it is up to us to grasp them. Sometimes, through silencing the mundane thoughts of the mind, and through deep contemplation of the mysteries of life, we are able to grasp some of these Divine truths. The problem is that we are often so excited by having realized something important, that our ego starts glorifying itself as if it had thought of the idea itself, shifting the focus from the Divine Self of the Spirit to the fake self of the mind. Other times, the opposite takes places, and feelings of insecurity and doubt lead us to criticize and suppress the Divine ideas we have realized. These feelings are also products of mental patterns adopted by us.
Many ideas are often destroyed by the mind before they can be manifested into physical reality as either righteous speech or action. For example, we might find ourselves in an uncomfortable situation which requires us to act against what we know to be correct. We see others around us engaging in destructive behaviors, and the Divine Spirit within us points out to us the great truth that such behavior is wrong. Feeling such conviction, we will not partake, and we might even feel inspired to motivate our peers to change their behavior patterns. This is a Divine idea which we have had the ability to understand. What happens way too often however, is that we begin to think such thoughts as “Who am I to instruct others on how to live their lives?”, or “No one would pay attention to me, and they might even discriminate against me, if I were to share this great truth with them, which would surely interfere with their immediate ignorance and pleasure.” We remain silent as to not disturb the masses with the truth, deciding to place minimal importance on the difference such an idea might have made in another’s life in the long run. We can see from this example, that this process of pollution and eventual destruction of a Divine idea is brought about by the various overpowering doubts, insecurities, confusions and preconceived notions that are so cherished and nurtured inside the finite human mind.
If we want to practice getting in tune with our Spirit in order to have deeper insights into the nature of things, e must resist becoming confused by the memories that haunt us, or by the aspirations we have of imaginary scenarios, or by fantasies of material gain or powers not yet attained. Realize that no other moment will ever come. Life is no more the present moment, as every second that passes brings about a completely new reality from the one we are experiencing now. If we are constantly overanalyzing the past, we are filling ourselves with regret, and if we are constantly thinking of the future, we are filling ourselves with shame for not being the person we wish to be now. Either way what we are doing above all is reinforcing the belief that the present is not good enough. When this happens continually, we become immersed in our thoughts, and we reach a point where we can never be totally in the present. If we cannot be in the present moment, we can never fully grasp the Divine ideas, or truths, of life. This is because the Spirit realm of wisdom, from which these truths come, is not ruled by time. Time is an imaginary product of our mind, and if we are constantly in another period of time in our head, we are definitely not getting in tune with the realm of Spirit. We must realize that now is the only time we have to act upon our intuition, and to transform ourselves into our highest version. When we receive a revelation from the Spirit, we must appreciate it to the fullest extent, and put it into practice before it becomes mentally corrupted.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
A HIGHER CALLING:
LIVING ACCORDING TO THE SPIRIT
Recognizing the ego for the prison that it is, we can feel ourselves being called to a Higher order, a Higher standard of living, than the masses, including that of our own carnal selves. We are compelled to rise above all kinds of petty nonsense and conflict, preferring inner peace and healing for all people instead. When we are able to put our worldly ambitions and carnal desires to the side, and we stop seeing each other as enemies competing for power and status, or for material luxuries such as the best-paying jobs, or the most expensive cars, homes, and vacations, we begin to get in touch with our real values and goals, which are the pure desires of our true Self, the reflection of God in man. As we become aligned with our true morals, values and beliefs, and we slowly but surely let go of all the lies we have incorporated into our personalities, we become aware of the amazing fact that we are all Spirits, formed from the exact same Divine essence; and we notice that all our shortcomings actually stem from the same root; which is, namely, weakness of Spirit.
Our Spirit has the miraculous capacity to be extremely strong, but its strength must be constantly exercised. Weakness of spirit is a condition reached when the Spirit’s holiness is not exercised, but rather ignored, resulting in an unconscious surrender to the mind. The mind, being a physical organ, which only began existing as we were conceived in our mothers’ wombs, is limited to the concepts, ideas, experiences, emotions, and thoughts it has contained within itself during the span of one lifetime. Our Spirits however, being made from the pure and eternal Infinite Light which emanates from God, actually possess all the qualities of Holiness, but only at a potential level, since we do possess free will, and so have the choice of whether to act upon our Holy nature or our mind’s carnal nature. A Spirit which has chosen to follow the path of the mind has chosen to follow material, inferior desires than those Holy ones we spoke of. That Spirit therefore becomes corrupted by almost uncontrollable addictions and vices, such as money, drugs and alcohol, lust, sex, and so-called material “power”. By following these carnal desires, the Spirit unknowingly enters a state of submissiveness to the mind, forgetting to exercise its own Holy attributes which would otherwise free it from the mind’s control.
A lot of us are walking around so immersed in our mind’s memories of pain, not knowing that we have the ability tap into a power capable of transcending all pain, and which lies dormant within us at all times. From this perspective, we find that can help anyone to change, by making them aware of the higher Self within themselves, which would then do the rest of the transformative work within them. Ultimately, we must all begin by healing ourselves. The good thing is that we can heal others in the process of healing ourselves, and in turn, we heal ourselves in the process of healing others. When we face hate with love we heal the planet which we live in, and this what so many of us are currently feeling called to do. We witness the atrocities committed by other human beings throughout our planet, and we wonder how someone from our same species, similar to us in many aspects, can hold the potential inside themselves for such acts as torture, mass murder, and even genocide. We cannot comprehend what can motivate people to commit these crimes, because we assume that all people think and feel the same as us, and are decent human beings. The fact is that, in Spirit, all of us have a common knowledge of what is right, and this is the cause of the moral laws agreed upon by most societies on Earth up until the present day, such as outlawing murder, rape, and theft. These are things which we all agree upon as evil. However, although we are the same in Spirit, in mind we are all very different, and this is the reason why many people break those moral laws which we mentioned.
Someone who break such an obviously just law as “Thou shalt not kill” is definitely not listening to the inner Spirit of wisdom within himself. Such a person is so immersed in the evil desires of his mind and emotions, that in an instant he takes the life of a fellow human being, choosing instead to ignore the knowledge he knows deep inside, that what he has done is wrong. Whereas the Spirit knows the truth and wisdom regarding everything, and is eternal and forever Holy, the mind is molded in accordance to the lives we lead and the things we experience, so each person’s mind is completely different, depending on the quality of life that person has lived. Our minds can be built up with knowledge and creative ideas, or they can become corrupted with hate, anger and resentment, among other vile things. The Spirit cannot be molded by such things. Spirit always contains wisdom within it, and therefore even the worst criminals contain the Spirit of wisdom within them. The problem is that when we decide to follow the mind, we are at its mercy. The mind will lead us, and its leadership will be based on what has been accumulated in it, be it good or bad. Knowing that such is the condition of man, we who acknowledge this great truth have chosen to follow our intuition, recognizing every moment as a Divine opportunity to tune in to the deepest wisdom available to us. We feel that it is our duty to utilize the talents and ideas which we have have been blessed with in order to positively influence those around us and to inspire them to have positive, productive ideas of their own and to come face to face with their own realization of this higher calling of the Spirit. Our duties are also to use those same talents God has granted us with in order to keep on refining our own characters as we master the art of self-realization, building more talents within ourselves and finding more opportunities to share with the world. In this manner, we keep on sharing wisdom and receiving wisdom, following the Spirit within us, and encouraging others to do the same. There is no greater joy in life than helping others to become aware of their Divine nature, which will forever aid them in overcoming their struggles and conquering their fears.
As I describe this awakening process to you, let me explain that this feeling in my soul, which I know is felt by many others, transcends any kind of dogma or religion, as it is simply a longing for The Absolute Truth. I feel a deep bliss whenever I meditate on the feeling of being here now, in the present moment. I feel amazement at the beauty and intelligent design of the planet which we live in. As I walk through the woods, or hike up a mountain, or swim in the beach under the rays of the sun, I am in a constant state of awe at the infinite diversity all around me. I am overwhelmed with intense excitement as I feel old layers of pain, resentment, judgements, false ideas and ideologies begin to crumble to dust. I see it so clearly now, how blinded I used to be back when I used to wait for every weekend in order to get as drunk as possible and escape the dullness of material existence for a few hours. I am now aware that many of us are content with living such miserable lifestyle because we have forgotten who or what we truly are. If we had any idea of the Divine, infinite potential we hold within our Spirit, we could not stand another minute of feeling sorry for ourselves or complaining about our lives; instead, we would get up right now to do what we need to do, to promote everything we love with passion and positivity, and to build others up with every interaction.
I realize now that once we start being thankful for what we have and seeing life as a complete balance, which presents us with relaxation when it is needed, and with challenges when they are needed, everything begins to automatically feel like a blessing, as if the pieces of the puzzle are constantly falling into place even through every obstacle we may face. Every single moment of life can now be appreciated to the fullest extent, and regarded as a blessing or a lesson, which is actually its own kind of blessing. This does not mean that those of us who have chosen to walk this spiritual path live in a perfect bubble of happiness. There are still many moments when we may fail to control our minds, letting our guard down and allowing a particularly strong emotion, such as anger, to take over. Do not panic, for enlightenment is not a fixed point that can be reached in time, but rather a kind of awareness that we can practice during every moment we live, for as long as we live. Once awareness is attained and continually practiced, every error can be corrected. Awareness is what allows us to evaluate our behavior patterns, and to constantly exercise wisdom as we find new, creative ways to correct the negative patterns. It is my firm belief that if we all take a moment every day to step back from our mental chatter and the problems of our everyday life, and we examine which are the things in our lives that truly serve us, and which are the things that hold us back, we can all come face to face with the Divine spirit of wisdom within us, often called conscience. If we all were to habitually practice listening to our conscience on a daily basis, we would have a much better planet without a doubt. In conclusion, my advice to anyone is to practice constantly listening to the wisdom within, which is God’s reflection in you, and urge others to do the same. If we follow these steps, we can all become righteous, and experience a much more fulfilling experience on this planet and beyond.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
ON THE MEANING OF REBELLION
To be a Rebel is not the equivalent of being a criminal or a gangster, or to take part in some form of armed rebellion or protest. By that statement, I in no way mean to infer that protesting against injustice is negative at all, but my aim here is to rid the word “Rebel” from any negative, violent or aggressive connotation, or any mental image of political conflict that might be associated with it. A Rebel is, in fact, an intellectual; a person who, seeing the vast majority of his or her peers crawl down an endless road of perdition and struggle, wrestling against the demons of temptation, lethargy and depression which so often take hold of us when we live a life which is completely immersed in material existence, decides to take control and make something of himself, his real Self. A rebel, rather than aspiring to be a wealthy and famous celebrity or businessman who can do as he pleases at any moment in order to feed his weak ego which is held together only by the very insignificant fact that he has millions safely stored away in a bank account, aspires first to be a righteous individual, knowing that no person can fail in any respect who walks in righteousness.
A Rebel is righteous in the sense that a rebel empties his mind of harmful, negative ideas and thoughts, realizing that the mind is a very powerful tool which we ought to be deeply thankful for. A Rebel realizes that by constantly feeding his mind with trash as most of society does, he is bound to achieve none but the same results as if he were to constantly fill his body with junk food, namely that the mind will become ill and unstable. Upon facing such a realization, a rebel cannot refuse to take action and ignore the truth. A rebel is a follower of truth under any circumstances, who refuses to behave as the masses do simply because we have been sold the idea that we must do so in order to survive, and who refuses to behave as his carnal desires entice him to, not allowing himself to be blinded and tempted by the idea of the cheap thrill derived from false, worldly pleasures. Indeed, it is true that no great achievement in the history of our planet has ever come from conformists, and as George Bernard Shaw put it, “all great truths begin as blasphemies.” Therefore, rebellion has nothing to do with physical or verbal violence or abuse. On the contrary, a Rebel, realizing the amazing healing power which words contain, uses his speech to heal, be it through blessings, greetings, prayer, conversation, lectures, or music, which is an obvious favorite of mine.
There is no Doubt that society has indeed been heavily influenced and shaped by notorious Rebels. One who has inspired millions, if not billions of people, is John Lennon, who definitely agreed with me in the opinion that violence is not an effective way of dealing with the corrupt system in which we live in. Lennon once stated that “when it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game”, further adding that “once they’ve got you violent, they know how to handle you. The only thing they don’t know how to handle is non-violence and humor.” So now, I believe we have established without a doubt that Rebellion, or the simple act of being a Rebel, has nothing to do with weapons or violence, but everything to do with true peace, which we call inner peace. I consider inner peace to be the ability to remain calm in all situations, through all the happenings of life, through the highs and the lows; and not only that, but to find beauty in impermanence of it all. This does not mean to be emotionless through a desperate situation, but rather not to make a non-desperate situation desperate with our irrational emotions. Such a thing happens when we let our emotions take hold of us, and we navigate life being easily influenced by them. If we continue on in such a manner, we are sure to be easy prey for those who want to, consciously or unconsciously, alter our thought patterns and behaviors, whether for better or for worse. Most of the time however, mental manipulation does not happen for the benefit of the manipulated person, but for the benefit of the manipulator. Therefore, a true rebel can renounce violence and retribution in the face of adversity, refusing to bring himself down to the level of those who are not yet on his level of consciousness and appreciation for peace.
A Rebel dares to voice an unpopular opinion, to shine bright and proud among a mass of dull and unoriginal zombies, copying and repeating, internalizing and spewing back out, everything they consume through the physical senses. A Rebel boldly exploits his creative talents and interests, as well as the full power of his mind and body, in order to optimize his life experience, by constantly learning, and applying what is being learned, in order to remain in a state of constant improvement and progress, which ultimately leads to inner and outer prosperity alike. A Rebel never ceases to observe and analyze each moment of life, knowing that each movement, from the smallest to the largest, is but a manifestation of the energy which is all around us as well as inside us, the energy which guides us as long as we listen, and which is a direct emanation of God’s Divine light. The same inner light is what guides us on the path of Rebellion, as we educate ourselves and stop falling as victims to a sheep mentality. I conclude this statement by pointing out that being a Rebel is not an option in our world; it is actually essential to any person who wishes to become free, and to open up to the full potential which is hidden dormant within himself. As Albert Camus so perfectly put it in one of my long-time favorite quotes, “The only way to deal with an unfree world, is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
THE BRAIN AS A FILTERING MECHANISM FOR REALITY
As individuals on this planet, we all experience reality from our own level of perception and understanding, and from this we conclude that reality is not a fixed truth, but rather subjective, depending on each person’s view on various aspects of existence. This means that two people standing side by side can be experiencing completely different worlds while standing no more than a meter away from each other. Indeed, this is so on a merely mental level, since the non-stop, limited thoughts and ideas of our egos prevent us from ever joining in unison as an entire species. However, this is not to say that we are each floating in our own bubble of reality and are completely separate from everyone and everything else either. There definitely is one Absolute Truth behind the universe, the world, and all that we call reality; and there is undoubtedly one single Divine energy, fragmented into endless bodily incarnations. By Divine, I mean that the energy which pervades everything that exists emanates from God himself.
Since we as spiritual beings have been placed in this material world for whatever reason, the fact is that we must survive; and so that we might survive in the face of destruction, which takes place every day in our planet, we have been gifted with a wonderful instrument called the brain. The brain, as great as it may be as a tool for physical survival, is actually a filter which prevents us from seeing every single perspective there really is to see when it comes to any given situation. We cannot perceive all these perspectives because their understanding lies in facts beyond what our brain perceives, both within and without us. This is, in fact, an incomplete version of complete reality.
Aldous Huxley proposed this fascinating idea in his book The Doors of Perception, suggesting that the brain is actually a filtering mechanism which decides what parts of complete reality are relevant to our current situation and needed for survival, and basically blinds us from everything else which does not fit this purpose. This means that the brain was primarily designed to deal with material existence, by processing complete reality, which cannot be seen through any one man’s personality or bias, and presenting us with an incomplete version of reality which only includes the details the brain deems necessary for our current, physical survival. This version of reality is the finished product, so to speak; the rendered version of reality that we see with our eyes. As has been scientifically observed, when one uses psychedelic drugs, there is actually less activity in the brain, as opposed to more. This is not what one might normally expect when one considers the overwhelming and even frightful images or dream-like thoughts that one experiences during a psychedelic trip. This peculiarity was precisely what led Huxley to his hypothesis of the brain being a filtering mechanism. How could the brain produce such an altered state of consciousness by using less of its own activity?
It is logical to assume that these realities which we experience when we relax the use of our brains do not come from the realm of mind at all, but from the spiritual dimensions which are all around us yet invisible to us. The idea is that psychedelic drugs, as well as other methods such as fasting and meditation, lead us to these mystical experiences since they temporarily weaken the filter, or brain, which prevents all these aspects of reality to be perceived during daily, sober existence. This does make a lot of sense to anyone who believes that there is some sort of spiritual reality beyond this material existence and our senses. If there is truly more to life than what we see with our eyes or hear with our ears, then perhaps the brain really is the thing that prevents us from seeing all there is to see, or hearing all there is to hear, and with good reason at that.
Although experiences such as occasional psychedelic trips and fasting can be extremely beneficial to spiritual awakening and complete consideration of the mystery of life, can you imagine living every day of your life in an acid trip? Comically, we might joke around about what bliss it would be if we could live free of responsibilities, wandering up and down the bright landscapes of such an altered dimension forever; but the fact is that we would not be able to lead so-called “normal” or productive lives, as I believe is something most experienced psychonauts can agree upon. Just contemplate how time and space are described by spiritual masters to be illusory aspects of the physical world. Is it a coincidence that a small dose of psychedelics can make us forget about our schedule, and a large dose has the miraculous ability to completely alter our sense of space, not to mention making time completely disappear as if it were such an irrelevant and insignificant thing?
Mystical experiences can give us a glimpse of divine gnosis, but eventually we must come back to our material reality and put what we have learned to use, finding creative ways in which we can contribute to the well-being of other sentient beings in any way we can. If we do not put acquired knowledge to good use, it is just that; knowledge, with no purpose. However, when we start to actively seek opportunities to use what we have learned in order to promote positivity in our environment, what we are doing is allowing ourselves to constantly surrender to wisdom, allowing it to speak from our true Self, the reflection of God, and to build strength of character within us. Such is the way in which Divine wisdom begins to show us the right path to walk, refining every aspect of our character. It is very true that knowledge is definitely important, and it is even synonymous with power according to the famous Albert Einstein quote, but ultimately it is wisdom which allows us to use the knowledge we have acquired in intelligent ways, ways that can inspire, build and contribute to civilization. Never stop learning, but never become so immersed in your learning that you overlook the wisdom you can build by applying your knowledge to reality.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
THE SILENCE WITHIN THE SELF
Often times silence speaks louder than a thousand words. Silence can be sleep, it can be a dream. It can be a daydream. Silence can be deep meditation or introspection, or it can be a subtle representative of a profound sense of awe that has effectively rendered one speechless. Silence can even signal pain, disregard or disrespect for another. Silence can mean someone is at the brink of despair and sees no use for speaking, being so stuck in the troubles of his or her own mind.
Our topic today focuses, however, upon a very positive kind of silence; in fact it is the most positive kind of silence there is, Divine silence. The silence mentioned by Osho in the aforementioned quote is, in fact, that kind of silence, the silence we find within when we practice various forms of meditation, or when we practice identifying more and more with our true awareness rather than with our mind’s thoughts and ideas. This silence contains occult wisdom in itself, since this Divine silence is the silence of the Self, and the Self is in turn a reflection of the Almighty God who created all there is. In other words, we (our true Selves) were made in God’s image, as a reflection of such a great power, and this silence which we find within, represents the nature of each one’s individual Self. It represents some of the good attributes of God, which are also found in the Self as a reflection of God; namely, tranquility, peace, clarity, bliss and wisdom.
When we set out to find the wisdom contained in us in spiritual form, we create this conscious shift in our being, replacing mental chatter, worry and anxiety, which lead to extreme stress, physical illness and an overall unsatisfactory life experience, and we begin to discover the immense benefits of identifying with the silence of the Self, rather than the noise of the ego, or man’s carnal nature, which resembles a toddler who will not, by any means, stop whining in a very loud and obnoxious way until he gets exactly what he wants. Such are the characteristics of the ego inside of man, burning with selfish, lustful desires which are bound to corrupt even the most righteous of persons, bringing them to certain sorrow and grief if followed. In contrast, the silence we refer to resembles babies at the moments in which they are exploring our diverse world for the first time, crawling around in this strange new land, adventuring into the unknown. One need not try too hard in order to notice their pure sense of wonder and amazement, of awe and “holy curiosity” for the miracle of life, as Einstein mentioned.
Babies stare perplexed at us and at the objects around them, intrigue written on their innocent little faces. One cannot help but notice that they are happy merely to be alive, and to be a part of the Divine order of existence. Babies are not afflicted by the incessant fears and ambitions that haunt us adults as though they were real demons, which lead some of us to commit crimes or act out, succumb to severe anxiety or chronic depression, or even take our own lives. Our planet is in urgent need of people with holy curiosity. We must aspire to be holy, righteous, selfless, pure, wise, and all other attributes of goodness, for this is the nature of the spirit in us, the true Self. Selfishness, lust, greed, envy, hate; this is the carnal nature of the mind, a physical organ with ingrained survival instincts.
We must gradually learn to keep the desires of the mind in check, and learn to distinguish between the desires of the mind and the advice of the Self. When we become such inspired, awe-struck children again, that we cannot succumb to temptation, because we feel a deep conviction to shining the light of wisdom that is within, then we are making progress, stepping into the silence that allows us to make the right decision, free of mind’s doubts and insecurities. Humanity must interpret the world anew, as if reborn, in order to see the beauty which is all around us, which our mind loses interest in over many years of social conditioning in our modern system of life. Although this is often so, it is definitely possible to tune back into our Self. In times of violence and corruption as we see in our present day, it is essential that the wise person take his or her responsibility to life and to our planet seriously, and decides it is time to start living life in a more mature manner, a wiser manner. Let us all then train our minds, in order that they may obey when we request silence of them, so that we may take some time to tune in to our Self, our spirit, and receive the wisdom of God in our lives.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~
SELF-CONTROL IS THE SCIENCE ABOVE ALL SCIENCES
Manly P. Hall was an amazing scholar on occultism and Divine matters regarding religion and spirituality, and it is no surprise that his perspective on wisdom would be so clear and accurate. As Plato once observed and stated, “Those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture will never be understood, let alone believed, by the masses.” This unfortunate truth is due to the fact that “the masses”, as Plato describes the general, average population, seldom seek truth. After all, the truth can be very painful in many instances.
Truth often hurts because it tears apart the preconceived notions in our minds; notions which have been fabricated subconsciously through years of conditioning and propaganda. We have proof that this is true when we observe and accept the sad reality that most people are fully aware of the destructive nature of their nutritional habits, yet they continue eating just the same. Much the same way, the addict is fully aware of the utterly devastating nature of the drug he consumes, but he chooses to indulge time and time again. Why do human beings act in such a way? We engage in such behaviors because they keep us in our comfort zone; they do not interfere with our sense gratifications, or the desires of our body and mind, but the real fault in us which is the root of the problem lies in a complete lack of self-control. Self-control is essential to living a balanced, positive and healthy life, yet most people choose to exert a very limited amount of it during daily life, as well as exercising a very limited amount of willpower to go along with it, if any at all.
So what exactly is this life-changing practice of self-control really all about? Self-control is described by 19th-century philosopher and writer James Allen as being “of greater importance than all the other sciences combined, and without which, all science would but serve the ends of selfishness, and aid in man’s destruction”. This is a universal truth which cannot be ignored. Can we imagine the events that would take place in our planet if human beings were not born with at least some ability to exercise self-control? All we need to do to answer this question is pay close attention to the lives of people who cannot control themselves, in whichever aspect it may be, in order to come to the conclusion that a constant lack of self-control can wreak havoc on a person’s life, as well as the lives of those around such a person. Let us be thankful that self-control is still among us to some degree, in some more than in others; for it is a Divine blessing and is something which can truly be called wisdom.
“For the spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.” ~ 2 Timothy 1:7
Some versions of the above quote mention that God gave us a spirit of self-control, while other versions of the Bible mention a sound mind, rather than self-control. It is evident however, that both are equivalent to each other, for one who exercises intense self-control is blessed with a sound mind, guided by wisdom to do what is right. Attaining wisdom means having an inner guide so to speak, a Divine light continually guiding your way through the darkness of shallow material existence. Wisdom means sacrifice, doing the right thing even when we desire otherwise. In wisdom are contained such Divine attributes as love, kindness, compassion, mercy, truth, joy, peace, honesty, forgiveness and generosity. Wisdom, which we now see includes truth, can only be attained by those in a constant and honest search for the eternal truth, the truth which has inspired all religions, as well as all systems of philosophy and psychology, all forms of art, design and literature, and all forms of creativity of all that is good and pure. One who despises the truth despises wisdom altogether.
We must seek truth and we can be sure we will attain wisdom, but it cannot be stressed enough how much we must seek. Truth requires us to make a complete commitment to ascending the path of liberation from all that is not true and wise. A commitment to the truth means making a radical decision to really become indifferent to our preferences, and really evaluate our ideas of comfort, ideal living, leisure, and success, among other very important things. Seeking does not have to necessarily be external nor internal. In fact, seeking does not even have to involve learning at all. Actually, one of the most liberating processes which inspire Divine wisdom, is the process of emptying your mind of all thoughts which are not truly your own, as well as of all fears, regrets, pains, grudges and insecurities. Go ahead and get in touch with your sense of adventure, of Divine wonder, and seek, anywhere and everywhere you go, alone and together with anyone and everyone you encounter on your path. Be a light that emanates through the wisdom you have acquired thus far on your journey. Seek within and without, high and low, in silence and in music, in the sadness and the happiness of life, through the pain and the pleasure, through the mundane and the mad. Search in all these places, as well as in any others which occur to you. Look above and look below, for both are indeed an upper and lower reflection of the same Divine energy, the energy of pure Wisdom.
~ REBEL SPIRIT ~